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Happy (belated) Birthday to Me!

A bit over 3 weeks ago, I celebrated my birthday.  It has been the tradition for the last several years that Lindz and I would go out for sushi.  This birthday had an added bonus, it was my last official day doing construction.  And as an extra special bonus, we hit the happy hour pricing at Osaka!

IMG_20130827_200416_2Spiraling in from the top and going clockwise, I got tuna, red snapper, surf clam, flying fish roe, smoked eel, smoked salmon, and mackerel.  Most of these I’ve had before, but I did find a couple of new things to try.  I never the flying fish roe sashimi before.  It is served in a cucumber cup.  It wasn’t bad, but I prefer the sushi version that is served in a nori cup.  The cucumber muted the flavor of the roe IMHO.  The stand out was the smoked salmon.  It had a nice but not over powering smoked flavor.

As a thank you / going away present, my boss gave me a really beautiful smoker.

IMG950785It was a good day!

A Traditional Birthday Meal

Well, a traditional meal if you are over in East Asia.  Or if you’re me, it’s something that I’ve been doing for the last six-ish years.  That’s right, it’s sushi time!

This year for my birthday meal, Lindz and I went out to Osaka with Matt and Janessa.  Since it was my birthday I got to get whatever I wanted (not sure how that is different from any other time we’ve gone there, but I just rolled with it).  I decided that it was past due on ordering a boat load of sushi.  I mean that quite literally.

A boatload of happy!

Osaka has an item on their menu called the Love Boat.  It contains 10 pieces of sushi, 18 pieces of sashimi, a rainbow roll, and a dragon roll.  All served in a wooden boat.  Hence the name.

All of the pieces were “chef’s choice,” so from the outset I wasn’t expecting anything too lavish as far as selection.

Close up of the bow selection.

Close up of the stern of the boat.

I was right about the selection.  A lot of tuna, salmon, and the like.  Nothing off the beaten path, but all very tasty and a lot of it.

Ever since Matt and Janessa ordered deep fried crab in RI, we’ve been ordering it as a an appetizer.  Been working good so far.

Not quite as good as Enn’s, but then that was the best I’ve ever had.

Since I can put away a lot of sushi, I finished off Lindz’s half and still ordered a couple of extra pieces to cap off the meal.

A bit of octopus and eel as a nice finish to a nice meal.

Another Birthday Meal

Last week we went out for our friend Martha’s birthday.  Her chosen destination was Mario’s Bar at Gasthof Zur Gemutlichkeit in Minneapolis.  Gasthof’s is a German beer hall with everything that you would associate with the idea.  Loud people, lots of drinking, drinking songs, beer, wandering accordions, boots full of beer, waitresses that looked like they just came from the set of The Sound of Music (I know that it’s set in Austria, but that’s close enough for this Polack), beer, cabbage, schnitzel, oh, did I mention beer?  Our schedule got messed up that day and we were both very hungry by the time both of us got home, so we decided to head over there early and get some food in the dining room before heading down into the bar.  Despite having some Germanic blood in her, Lindz isn’t too fond of German cuisine.  I, on  the other hand, revel in it.  I mean what’s not to love?  They have all sorts of sausages, cabbage with nearly everything, dumplings, bacon, mushrooms, and really that is just the tip of the iceberg!  Lindsay ended up getting some chicken soup with homemade noodles and the shrimp appetizer plate.  I got the Halbe Gebratene Ente, or in English, the half roast duck.  It came with a dinner salad (pretty boring), red cabbage (cabbage and beets, which I found surprisingly good considering that I don’t like beets), cranberry sauce for the duck (num!) and I chose the german potato salad (take out the mustard and add dill pickles, bacon and warm it up, which is truly divine).  Here, this might give you a better idea of what I ate:

It tasted even better than it looks!

It’s not in the picture, but I had a Hacker Pschorr Alt beer with my meal.  It is a dark beer from Munich, but it is nice and smooth.  Not bitter at all.  I was only able to make it two-thirds of the way through the plate before I had to call it quits.  Also by that time, we were technically running late for the party in the bar.

Downstairs was great.  They had a Polka band playing, people dancing, and apparently a Bad Christmas Sweater party going on.  Here I got myself a Paulaner Hefe-Weizen.  A nice Hefe-Weizen with a little bit of “chew” to the consistancy, just the way I like it.  It was a fun and relaxing get together.  I’ll leave you with a sign that I saw in the bar:

This is why Germans entertain me.

Belated Birthday Present.

For my little sister’s birthday this year, Lindsay and I took her out for her first sushi experience at Osaka’s in Roseville.  Before you ask, no I didn’t take a photo of the sushi that we got because Sara and I split one of their standard sushi platters, so there wasn’t anything really wild or weird on it.  There was a mix of tuna, salmon, a California roll and a bunch of other stuff that I don’t remember (guess I should have taken a picture after all).  However, I was pleasantly surprised to see that they put some eel on it.  Sara’s reaction was fairly typical of what I’ve seen with other newcomers.  She liked the flavor, but wasn’t sure about the texture.  She definitely liked the rolls more than the sushi.  Not too surprising, at least to me, is that her favorite is the eel.  I was nice and didn’t make her try the sashimi.  That I usually reserve for the second trip.  All in all she enjoyed it.  Not sure if she wants to eat it again, but she was glad that she tried it.

As a side note, there was something that I noticed on the menu that I found very humorous.

duh.

 

Categories: eating out, humor, misc Tags: , ,