What do they call this when it is sushi?

A good friend of mine, whom I shall call L.R., got a job … a pretty nice job, with benefits and a salary and everything, in the “helping” industry, which she’s good at and which she likes. So I took her out for a congratulatory dinner (and just because we had not seen each other in weeks). It took me some effort to get her to tell me where she really wanted to eat. L.R. is a sweetly, quietly self contained person (but made of steel inside, so don’t mess with her) so it was totally out of character for her to tell me where we should go so I could buy us both dinner. But I made her talk using persuasion.

It turns out she had a new favorite place, and that is what I wanted to do. I wanted to go to her favorite place, order her favorite thing on the menu (plus or minus) and drink her drink and if she normally ate desert (and thank FSM she did not) try that desert as well. I figured she would have a routine and some strong preferences, and sometimes I like to experience the preferences and choices of someone that I care for. It’s a quirk of mine.

I got lucky. Well, not lucky — I knew L.R., a very cool person with long experience in the food industry, would make only good choices. Her new favorite place is Midori’s Floating World Cafe on 27th Ave in South Minneapolis. It is right across the street from the old Resources Center for the America’s building, and next to The Real CMF’s favorite restaurant (to which I’ve not yet been).

We had one of the noodle dishes, a biggish bottle of hot sake, and some sushi.

As we were ordering, I remembered that neither of us had brought along our List of Endangered Fish: Do Not Eat Wallet Insert, but I think we did OK, staying away from sea mammals and anything that was really expensive.

Lucky again: It turns out that L.R. and I have pretty much exactly the same taste in sushi: It’s all good but there must be eel.

I have three things to say about this resturant: 1) It has a very nice atmosphere, a small establishment with a simple line-up of unpretentious tables and a sushi bar, family run, staffed with excellent servers; 2) The food is quite good; and 3) The prices are very nice.

L.R. is living in what we used to call a ‘crash house’ … the sort of place I misspent a fair amount of time in my youth … but I won’t say too much about who is crashing there these days as this blog is monitored by the You Know Who. I assume. But her stories reminded me of my own stories so I think we ended up making each other laugh a lot. Maybe we were a little boisterous, because when we got around to leaving, we were the only customers and the proprietor seemed really happy (to see us go?).

I highly recommend dinner with L.R. But since most of you can’t have that, I recommend that you try Midori’s Floating World Cafe in South Minneapolis with someone who makes you smile.

And speaking of sushi, this is the video of the famous Japanese Frilled Shark.

Comments

  1. #1 Stephanie Z
    December 10, 2008

    I’m very glad you had good sushi, but you must try CMF’s place. It’s lovely.

    And you do know that your quirk, unless you’re very up front about it, is going to come across completely differently to Minnesotans, yes? You must. I’m sure you’ve gotten into plenty of those “Where do you want to go?” “No, where do you want to go?” discussions.

  2. #2 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    LOL

    I’m still grinning at the conversation.

    “So, where do you want to go.”

    “Oh, anywhere, I don’t care.”

    … (and so on and so on … via email, in person, for three or four days)

    “So, have you eaten anyplace good lately”

    “Yea, I this new Japanese restaurant off Lake St.”

    “Oh. So, when was the last time you ate there.”

    “Two days ago.”

    “Oh. So, you probably don’t want to eat there again right away.”

    “Yea, I guess so.”

    “Well, there’s greek”

    “I could do greek”

    “We could just go over to Eat Street and see what happens.”

    “We could.”

    “Maybe Azia or some place.”

    “We could.”

    “You want to eat in your Japanese resturant, right?”

    “It’s my favorite place, I want to show it to you”

    “What will we order?”

    “Eel, it’s my favorite”

    “And what will we…”

    “Sake. Of course”

    “OK, lead the way..”

    Yes, you are right. Even Amanda, who is native and knows my quirk, requires the same level of negotiation each time, even if I just want to eat half of her subway sandwich.

    “Just make it a foot long. I’ll eat the other half.”

    “Are you sure? I like a lot more pickles than you do”

    “I know, but this way you get double the double pickles because you take most of mine.”

    “Are you sure? I might put spinach on it…”

    “I love spinach.”

    and so on and so forth depending on how long th line is. …

  3. #3 Mr.Mom
    December 10, 2008

    Wow Greg, with all the things you make a stand on, im suprized you support eating sushi. suprized and dissapointed really…

  4. #4 Rob Clack
    December 10, 2008

    Awesome shark. With that big head and the exposed gills it looks as though it’s really pelagic, yet Wikipedia says 50m – 1500m, which is not that deep.

    Presumably your sushi did not include frilled shark.

  5. #5 Stephanie Z
    December 10, 2008

    And how do you negotiate dinners with someone who wants to try your favorites too?

  6. #6 Mimi
    December 10, 2008

    Alas, eel is on the avoid at all costs sushi guide for your wallet… but I have to have it anyway. I will avoid the others, but eel… it’s my vice.

  7. #7 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    Srsly? I would have thought eels would be common.

  8. #8 BZ
    December 10, 2008

    I haven’t had any eel sushi yet that I’ve found I can eat more than one of, it is potent stuff.

  9. #9 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    Wow Greg, with all the things you make a stand on, im suprized you support eating sushi. suprized and dissapointed really…

    Good point and sorry to disappoint you. Sushi is a bit of a loss leader in this regard. I eat a fair amount of vegetarian sushi, and as far as I know, that is OK. No fish in there of any kind. As to the rest of it, I think one has to look at the big picture.

    For thirty years, I walked to work. Did you? I have spent as little as possible …almost nothing at all… on products produced by companies that a) fund republicans and/or b) were involved in the Holocaust in any known way. Have you done that? Our recycling exceeds our trash by about 2:1 or more. How about yours? I have turned down both jobs and research grants because they would have involved entanglement with Apartheid South Africa … And so on and so forth.

    For the home, I purchase 100% politically correct food items. OK, 99%. I do not eat out much, and when I do, I order politically correct food items far more often than 80% of the eating-out population.

    So, I’m fine with what I ate last night. However, I’m very glad that you pointed out the importance of making excellent choices that include impacts on the environment. At the same time, though (and Mom, I’m not saying this about you at all, just more generally) one must not simply pick one or two relatively easy causes (like recycling and that’s it, or not eating sushi and that’s it, or whatever) and fetishize those things and ignore the rest of what you do every day.

    Stephanie: And how do you negotiate dinners with someone who wants to try your favorites too?

    I thought I was unique in this regard ..

  10. #10 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    I should have said major companies well known to flamboyantly fund Republicans as opposed to the clear alternatives of major compoanies known to flamboyantly fund Democrats. Like, buy heinz and not hunt, buy mircro-brewery beer and not coors, etc.

  11. #11 Joey
    December 10, 2008

    With what I hope is not completely off topic, if you like Sake, check out moto-i. On Lyndale down the street towards Lake from Herkimer’s. Delicious, excellent sake, never served hot(they even tell you why if you want to know why).

    Food is ok, as a non vegetarian you’ll probably find a lot more than I was able to, but the Sake is simply unbelievable.

  12. #12 Stephanie Z
    December 10, 2008

    Extreme, perhaps, but not unique.

  13. #13 dg
    December 10, 2008

    what do you do with people like me who get dissapointed when the person im eating with orders the same thing and typically avoids it by ordering last? …that way instead of both limiting ourselves to a large portion of one thing on the menu, we can then try two things and share both?

  14. #14 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    Extreme, perhaps, but not unique.

    My new motto.

    dg: That is a whole other issue and I’m glad you brought it up. They are completely different experiences. With whom do you share? Tonight, even thougth I hardly ever go out to eat, I’m going out with mother in law, father in law, and wife (for a special occassion, to be noted on blog later). FIL will fluctuate on his order playfully annoying MIL, who will eventually tell FIL what to order and get on with it. I am likely to order the same thing as MIL simply because we have very similar tastes in food. There will be three different dishes. Here are the probabiliteis:

    FIL gives food to SIL: 0%
    SIL gives food to FIL: 0%
    WIFE gives food to ME: 100%
    I give food to WIFE: 60%
    MIL gives food to ME: 0% if ordered the same, 100% if not
    I give food to MIL: 0% if ordered the same, 50% if not

    These probabilities result from preferences/etc on both sides of the transaction and it is pretty complex. But I do notice these things.

    Other times, Amanda and I will explicitly order two different things with the expressed intention of sharing them.

    I am very likely to order last and order something different than everyone else if eating in a restaurant I want to try out. In fact, last night, although I followed L.R.’s palate as an act of interactive friendship, I also ordered two other items in order to try the broader menu.

  15. #15 Monica
    December 10, 2008

    “So, I’m fine with what I ate last night. However, I’m very glad that you pointed out the importance of making excellent choices that include impacts on the environment. At the same time, though (and Mom, I’m not saying this about you at all, just more generally) one must not simply pick one or two relatively easy causes (like recycling and that’s it, or not eating sushi and that’s it, or whatever) and fetishize those things and ignore the rest of what you do every day.”

    Excellent point!

    Oh, and on the general topic of sharing you’re spot on to bring up this question. The sharing of the food. I am happy to share. Have a spicy tuna roll. Here. I know it’s my last one, it’s ok…Eat. it.

    My spouse, on the other hand, is not a sharer. Even though, after nine years together, I daresay he knows I am coming for what he’s got. He doesn’t like it, but he will grudgingly offer me some of whatever it is if I persist. This is the strategy I recommend to all who are partnered with non-sharers during dinner. Persistence pays off!

    Although they may be generous in many ways, non-sharers need to know they aren’t going to go hungry if they just. give. me. a. little. bite.

    Kermit prefers that I order the same as he does so I’ll leave his food alone. I have psychoanalyzed him on this and come up with some interesting results which I won’t share here. He also doesn’t groove on Japanese cuisine like I do (a bowl of soba noodles and hot sake and I am unbearably giddy for at least two hours).

    I am glad you found Midori’s Floating World; it’s one of my favorite places, along with Tanpopo Noodle Shop (all the way over in St. Paul) and Wasabi, on Washington Ave.

    Good luck tonight!

  16. #16 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    Tonight is manny’s, by the way.

  17. #17 Monica
    December 10, 2008

    Yumm-o! MEAT!

  18. #18 Andrew
    December 10, 2008

    buy mircro-brewery beer and not coors, etc.

    For political reasons? How about because one of these choices makes you puke and one of these choices tastes good?

  19. #19 Amanda
    December 10, 2008

    Oh I just MUST jump in! Greg portrayed the food interactions in our family PERFECTLY. Tears of laughter were streaming down my face after the subway sandwich bit, and I burst out laughing at the analysis of my parents when it comes to sharing food. This will definitely be brought up at our dinner tonight.

    And you may want to know that Greg has another quirk regarding food. If he’s cooking, he does not want to discuss with you what he’s making. He doesn’t know what will be in it until he makes it – so stop asking him questions! He doesn’t want to let you watch him make it (mainly because he doesn’t want you asking pesky questions about what he’s putting in it.) Just eat the food when it’s done, and ask questions afterwards. This works quite well now that I’ve got it figured out. It is an endearing quirk that I love!

    Happy Askiversary Greg.

  20. #20 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    Did they ask Leonardo da Vinci to explain every brush stroke as he painted the Mona Lisa?!?!?!?

    Happy Askiversary, Honey…

  21. #21 Amanda
    December 10, 2008

    Oi.

  22. #22 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    The sushi guide is here:

    http://www.blueocean.org/sushi

  23. #23 Greg Laden
    December 10, 2008

    Uffda.

  24. #24 MrMom
    December 10, 2008

    Thats it I declare a “green” pissing contest!
    I single-handedly carried a glacier up a moutain in Glacier National Park. Have you done that?

  25. #25 Greg
    December 10, 2008

    That is pretty ducking impressive.

    I once threw myself between a poacher and a wild antelepe herd.

  26. #26 Mike Haubrich, FCD
    December 11, 2008

    I guess I’m a piker. I don’t buy bottled water. And Mr. Mom, I puked on a glacier in Glacier National Park when I was a kid. Had a 104 degree fever the rest of the trip, and my only sightseeing after that was to a clinic in Alberta.

    I hope you didn’t see any Oreos chunks on the glacier you hauled up that mountain.

  27. #27 the real cmf
    December 12, 2008

    “It is right across the street from the old Resources Center for the America’s building, and next to The Real CMF’s favorite restaurant (to which I’ve not yet been). ”

    Well, geez, do I gotta break out a brass band or s/th? Geeez..and I even offered the “I gave you my real name” discount!!! NO ONE IN CYBERSPACE gets that!!GeeezJuice…Not only my favorite restaurant, but as a co-owner, it is my ONLY restaurant ( thanks Steph, for the rave ratings!)

    Our block is the NEW EAT STREET. FTR, Midori’s is moving across the street next year to the corner–better location, same great food.Town Talks owner Tor just sold out to the Greeks ( which can mean certain death in this town, or, occasionally, rebirth).

    Gandhi Mahal,fine Indian food, 27th and Lake street, is staying put, provided the landlord ( the not too recently my brother-was-defamed-and set-up-by-the FBI-via the-citycouncilman-Brian-Herron-bribery-scandal-landlord-and then GreenDean Zimmerman too-( doesn’t raise the rent again…

    AND: Where else can you actually get a platter of food–thali fingerfood–in the exact same style that Gandhi ate, here in MPLS?? My menu is Vegetarian,PLUS meat dishes with more spice on them than the average ‘Merican consumes in a year…my chef Baisop Ali cooks Goan, but has in his repertoire ANY
    Gandhi Mahal…try the lassi sampler: you will be pleased to your kneez/@www.gandhimahal.com

    Tell my Exec chef Ruhel( cleverly disguised as your waiter) or the lovely Rita ( whose wedding saris decorate the rooms)that Christopher said YOU get the 10% friends of friends discount on your order when you drop my name…

    About the restaurant: who knew that during PRIDE of this year, the only restaurant that had Bengali women wearing burqas and handing out PRIDE coupons was Gandhi?
    Apparently, only me, and the guys and gals from Patricks Cabaret;-)

    And: nice to see Amanda weighing in on the ‘askiversary': makes me wonder what the question was, really…;-)

  28. #28 Greg Laden
    December 12, 2008

    Geeez..and I even offered the “I gave you my real name” discount!!! NO ONE IN CYBERSPACE gets that!!GeeezJuice…Not only my favorite restaurant, but as a co-owner, it is my ONLY restaurant ( thanks Steph, for the rave ratings!)

    To be honest, I was not clear on what you wanted people to know or not know.

    So …. B.S. is the landlord? So don’t tape a file to the rent check ….

  29. #29 the real cmf
    December 13, 2008

    Nope: his brother H.
    But in the lore of the locals, they are ‘all related’ and in the ‘family’, Palestinian style.That family redesigned and reinvigorated Lake street, until the Feebs, Bushies et al. started deporting them; setting them up; harassing their known associates*sigh*; and throwing names in to the ‘desperate to prove a MN turrerism connection’ grist mill.
    Yeah, come on in some time, use ‘the name’ I am only
    troll-tally anonymous in cyberville…Sounds like a setup for a Seinfeld episode…

Current ye@r *