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Austin Sushi News #44, May 2006

Pom Pom Purin! Welcome to Austin Sushi News, a friendly by-product of the sushi website for Austin, Texas, Once every month or so, we bring you the latest scoop on sushi bars and related matters in Austin, Texas. You can UNsubscribe at any time by sending email to or by going to our Google Groups mailing list home. Subscribe by going to and filling in the mailing list box. If you have any problems, please send email to


Sushi Locator Update - More Enhancements!

The Sushi Locator leaps ahead once again using the latest technologies from Yahoo!. You can now view satellite imagery with overlaid streets for even easier navigation to your favorite sushi bars.

Tech Note: If it runs unusually slow, or images seem to be missing, you might need to upgrade your web browser with the latest Flash version 8 (it's free), use this link:

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Live Shrimp Sushi In The House

On a recent rip to San Diego, I had the opportunity to sample a delightful repast of live shrimp sushi at the excellent Sushi Bar Nippon.

The serving is simple and frisky. The skin of the tails is removed from two live shrimp and they are placed in a tray of ice in front of the customer (see the video here). The Green Teacustomer has to nimbly, and firmly, pick up the live shrimp (it may fight back!) and pull the tail from the body. Meanwhile, the sushi chefs are quietly amused. The raw shrimp have an almost buttery quality -- highly recommended!

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Sushi Learning Opportunities

The Natural Epicurean, a local macrobiotic cooking school, has more upcoming Japanese-related food classes:

May 30th, Natto
July 18th, Homemade Mochi
September 12th , Tempura
September 19th, Advanced Techniques: Kinpira
September 26th, Advanced Techniques: Vegan Sushi

As always, HEB's Central Market Cooking School has a sushi class or two almost every month, usually featuring Tim Thomas, WasabiExecutive Chef of Origami. His totally fun "Hands On Sushi" class is where you get blasted on Sake and Wine and learn the basics of making some kick-arse sushi at the same time. Yummers!

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Moonies and Mercury: Sushi Takes A Beating

Sushi has been taking quite the beating in the press recently. A recent story in the Chicago Tribune links the Rev. Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church to the distribution of most sushi-grade fish in the United States. The article states:

"Adhering to a plan Moon spelled out more than three decades ago in a series of sermons, members of his movement managed to integrate virtually every facet of the highly competitive seafood industry. The Moon followers' seafood operation is driven by a commercial powerhouse, known as True World Group. It builds fleets of boats, runs dozens of distribution centers and, each day, supplies most of the nation's estimated 9,000 sushi restaurants."

Meanwhile, this article from Reuters warns about the toxicity levels of Mercury in tuna consumed. The article states:

"Eli Saddler of, a campaign of California-based Sea Turtle Restoration Project, went to six top sushi restaurants in Los Angeles to test mercury levels in the fish they serve. 'The level of mercury in tuna these restaurants serve is so high they should be keeping this food off their lists,' Saddler said. 'Eating sushi has become the new Russian roulette.'"

The article continues, pointing out that the actual danger to humans may be overrated, and notes that other seafood is probably ok:

"Studies show seafood like shrimp and salmon with short life spans pose almost no risk of carrying mercury."

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All contents of this newsletter © 2006