For lunch today we wanted to do something special to celebrate my acceptance into the first of five PhD programs that I applied to last fall. We settled on sushi, in part due to our recent glut of heavy food and part for the entertainment factor. The sushi restaurant we chose (Qingdao has many) is in the lower level of the new retail complex I mentioned before in my post about Starbucks. I can't remember the name, but it was in Chinese anyway.
This chain follows the trend of using a conveyor belt that circles the central prep area where the chefs cook and that has bar seats on the opposite side. There are also booths, but they are not nearly as fun. As the little plates go by, with two to four pieces of sushi or sashimi or an appetizer on each, you can grab a plate off the belt, remove the plastic lid, and dig in. You're provided with a little dish for wasabi and soy sauce to dip your food in. Turner mixes his into a wet paste of wasabi while I go heavier on the soy, which is why his scalp itched and he almost broke into tears. Wasabi sure clears the sinuses. I actually found quite a bit to eat despite not enjoying raw fish. They used a lot of cooked tuna and cod, in addition to vegetables and bean curd. My favorite was probably the deep fried cucumber on sushi rice (trust me, it worked). We also ordered edamame, which were very tasty, miso soup, and sake.
Your bill is determined by the amount and pattern of all the plates you accumulate over the course of your meal. We ended up with about 12 plates. The price per plate varies from 6RMB (about $.90) to 22RMB (about $3.10), not bad for good sushi, so our bill came to about 130RMB (or a little under $20). It was delicious!
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