Oh boy, oh boy! I think that I have mentioned my love of sushi at least once or twice for the past couple of years. I remember very clearly my first visit to a sushi bar as an eight year old girl, straight blonde hair to my waist and huge scared eyes at the thought of FISH. Seriously! I HATED fish with a loathsome passion that would probably not shock any of you mother’s out there. I hated the texture. I hated the fishy smell and taste. I hated it poached, grilled, baked, sauteed and en papillote. I viewed all options with total disgust! So, you can imagine that when my extremely hip, actor parents living out the Hollywood/LA lifestyle decided to take their two lovely little girls out for their first sushi dinner……I was aghast at the suggestion of palating and supposedly digesting fish in the RAW!!! I couldn’t believe it. In my eight year old brain, my parents had completely lost their marbles. Why would you eat anything raw, let alone FISH!
Well, being wise beyond their years, they respectively asked the sushi chef how to order for us as an introduction to the cuisine. I’m sure you can guess, he suggested the California roll. That coupled with shrimp sushi, and my sister and I were hooked! Delicious, different, and a wonderful adventure sitting at the bar and watching the masters work quickly and beautifully. I loved it. And then, for the finale, the genius chef skillfully sliced and diced an orange into a beautiful rose for dessert. It was official! At eight years old, I was in the early stages of becoming completely sushi obsessed. The passion and cravings have only grown to adore all forms of sashimi and delicacies. It is a beautiful cuisine that now I have the pleasure of sharing with my own children (ummmm, yup, I was that weird mother feeding her toddlers sushi at sushi bars all over the greater Los Angeles area….starting with seaweed stuffed with rice and tofu and eventually graduating to delectable sashimi). Yes, we, as a family, completely embrace the concept of raw fish. And now, at 37 years old, I can officially say that I even eat fish cooked!!
With all that said, this LA girl wants to share with you guys about one of my FAVORITE sushi joints….and it just happens to be in my new hometown, Atascadero, CA:
One of the reasons that Sam and I adore Kai Lana, is it’s patio which is full of ambiance and fresh air….the perfect environment for some of the freshest and innovative sushi around the Central Coast. In the evening it has a very romantic vibe, but I also highly recommend Kai Lana for a decadent lunch. Their lunch specials are just that, special.
You have several options, but I always go for their special that includes a roll of your choice, five pieces of sushi and a gorgeous martini glass filled with brightly colored fresh sashimi sitting atop a bed of ice and daikon threads. Gorgeous and delicious, you eat with your eyes before your taste buds are even tantalized! Check out our mid-week lunch selections with our intern Brittany!
Starting first with the included fresh salad and miso soup….and then some Nigori to wash it down with. If you are unfamiliar with Nigori, you are in for a real treat! It is essentially an unfiltered sake that is served chilled. It has a milky white appearance and a nice sweet flavor. I adore it!
Now, drum roll please as I wheel out our roll selections. Delicious!!
5 sushi pieces along with their Albacore Delight roll. Yum!
5 pieces of sushi along with their Golden Cali Roll….
And, finally, my crazy sushi binge of 5 pieces of sushi, a martini glass of sashimi, and their Alaskan Roll.
Phew. Happy bellies!!
I hope you treat yourself to a wonderful experience at Kai Lana! It is magical!
Maybe sometime I will post on my other obsession….raw beef! Bahahaha