Monday Sushi?

Last night, I was sitting at home watching TV (hehe no, I don’t really get out much on Friday nights!), and there was a 20/20 special discussing 10 common myths. One of these such myths is that you shouldn’t eat at restaurants on Mondays, because they might be using food that had been bought the past Friday to use up leftovers, rather than using food freshly bought that day. Although the food shouldn’t kill you, you probably aren’t getting your dollar’s worth. The special also discussed sushi restaurants. Although the special says you shouldn’t be too “concerned about the quality of Monday fish in restaurants in such coastal cities as San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, New York — that have “fish-centric” menus.” (such as sushi restaurants), it warns you against half-priced sushi, because it probably isn’t of the greatest quality. Of course hearing about sushi always makes my ears perk up, and I thought it might be something interesting to discuss with all of my wonderful SushiDay readers.

So what do you think about this? Do you go out to eat on Mondays? Have you ever gone to a restaurant with a half-price sushi special? If so, have you noticed any lack of quality or even gotten sick from it? What about restaurant size… would you be more willing to trust a large, popular restaurant or a smaller, family owned sushi bar? I really do want to hear from all of you, so leave your thoughts in the comments, or if you are to shy to comment you can contact me and we can communicate by e-mail instead. 🙂

17 thoughts on “Monday Sushi?”

  1. Tim -

    The rule here in Omaha isn’t Monday, it’s Wednesday. Check with your restaurants and find out when the shipments come in. Several restaurants in town do a 1/2 priced happy hour, 3-5, and 1/2 priced late happy hour, 10-12. But the discounted sushi are just the generic cali rolls and the like.


  2. Amy -

    You know, I never really thought about it but I sure will now. I had a kinda bad sushi experience a couple of weeks ago at a small, inexpensive place that served sushi and chinese food. They had sushi in an open-air refrigerated case that you could just pick up and take with you, but I had ordered some (supposedly fresh) to go. I don’t know if they picked one out of the case without me knowing it or what, but AFTER I’d already eaten some I looked closer and noticed it didn’t look so hot. I thought “Gee I hope I don’t get sick from this,” and the next day I did.

    Anyone have experience with pre-made sushi like that? I’m in Wichita and there aren’t many places that do it, but how can you tell how long ago something has been made? I know it’s a lot more common elsewhere so maybe I just had bad luck. 😉

    Regardless, I won’t be going back to that restaurant. 🙂

  3. iang -

    From what I hear the rule is Sunday in NYC, particularly with anything labeled as “brunch”, a staple way to repackage/recombobulate aging leftover food like fish. But heck, if it tastes good and doesn’t make you sick…I don’t eat out much for brunch but I’ve eaten it at Sushi Samba once, it was delightful and tasty.

    A number of Korean and Japanese markets, some other supermarkets like Food Emporium and Whole Foods, even some delis around carry premade sushi like you’re talking about Amy. Most of these places are hit up enough and have gotten their production quantity down to such a science that they don’t have much or any fish leftover at the end of the day. However, personally I think the sushi at these places is tasteless, often not seasoning sushi rice properly or over chilling maki rolls to ensure they don’t go bad. Even once was given some sashimi that I could easily tell how someone would get sick from.

    That being said I’d hope the same would apply to the sushi restaurants around, it’s probably a good rule of thumb to stay clear of the empty ones, not that being adventurous doesn’t pay off from time to time 😉

  4. Devlyn -

    Here in Boise, Idaho, most of the Japanese restaurants are closed on Mondays anyhow (as well as Sundays). Most of the sushi places around here get their fish from one supplier (from whom I also get my own sushi-grade fish) who has deliveries on Tuesdays and Thursdays, thus I usually only eat sushi on those days.
    I’ve gotten okay sushi from the market kiosks, etc, but it’s certainly nothing to brag about. Nearly all of the sushi places here are downtown, and are all of pretty much the same quality – the main difference between them being quality of service and atmosphere.

  5. Allison -

    Thanks for responding everyone! It’s really fascinating to hear how this “rule” changes from region to region.

    Tim – Yeah, I agree… everyone should definitely check with their local restaurants to see when the shipments are! We have a happy hour at some of our sushi restaurants too, although I haven’t noticed any real difference in quality.

    Amy – Awww, that sucks that you got sick from sushi! I have never gotten sick from sushi, although Son and I both got pretty sick from some leftover Chinese food! 🙁 I have noticed that a lot of premade sushi doesn’t look so great though. They sell some in some of the little stores on my campus, but I don’t dare try it… I’m not sure if I trust it at all!

    iang – Interesting! I don’t eat brunch very often, but I agree… if it tastes good and doesn’t make you sick, go for it! I also agree with your point that sushi from most stores is not the best. Of course, when I’m broke and desperate, sometimes I do buy sushi from grocery stores, but not very often. 😛 Good point about empty restaurants… if no one goes there, it’s probably not very good! Of course, there are always little ones that aren’t very well known that end up being really great… so go with your judgement!

    Devlyn – It’s good to know when the supplier delivers the fish! 🙂 It’s always good to know you can rely on pretty much the same quality from all the sushi restaurants. Unfortunately there are so many sushi restaurants in the Southern California area it’s impossible to know which are really good and which are not so great!

  6. Lucas -

    Hi Allison,
    I recall reading that in Anthony Bourdain’s book, confidential kitchen. I think that he said the markets were closed Mondays, due to having been open for Sunday trading. I asked a sushi chef here in Osaka about the market times here, and he said that most [good] sushi places here are shut on Wednesday because the fish market is shut that day. But of course, I can always go to some restaurant that has their own tank of fish….

  7. Ralph Whitbeck -

    Our Sushi restaurant has all you can eat sushi on Wednesday nights $20…I love it and I got it often before I started making my own sushi (which by the way has been months since I last rolled a fished and smoked it..err…ate it).

  8. Yvo -

    Good question! Here in NYC, I hear that it’s Mondays… and actually, my favorite-bestest-freshest sushi/sashimi place ever is closed on Mondays. So maybe that’s why.

    If any of you are in NYC, there’s a place called Sushi Park on 2nd Ave b/w 7&8th St. that does half price rolls like every day. I’ve eaten there twice (well, once, since the 2nd time I was already full so I just had a miso soup…) and I was fine, and I know plenty of people who eat there and don’t get sick. But I think their volume/turnover is really high- it’s always packed with NYU students- so there isn’t too much concern over old fish. I’ve also eaten at a few places that have half price or cheaper sushi but it’s never been a problem- then again, it’s not usually places that are like “Monday, 1/2 price sushi!” it’s just every day that it’s discounted (which… means it’s regular price for them…).

    My first time eating raw rolls was a salmon roll from a deli. In NYC, delis that have sushi from the open refrigerated case are extremely common, and so after a year of watching my two friends eat these (sometimes at the very same place) and fare well, I tried it- with no one by my side to say “That looks funny!” I got raucously sick and didn’t try again for 2 years (I was 16 or so at the time). That deli is in Battery Park/TriBeCa (a richy rich area), near my high school…. and it was summer, if that had anything to do with it. I don’t think I’ve gotten sick since on sushi, though.

  9. Allison -

    Lucas – Yeah I think the 20/20 special mentioned that book and actually interviewed him. It makes sense to close the better sushi restaurants on the days that the fish market is closed, although I agree… you could go to a restaurant that has its own fish tank! 🙂

    Ralph – You haven’t been making sushi?!?! *gasp*

    Yvo – I agree… places with high turnover should be pretty safe sushi-wise. The sushi restaurant I usually go to also has half-priced sushi every day, so I figure it should be pretty safe to eat. I’ve eaten there quite a bit and never had a problem! I’ve never tried sashimi or sushi with raw fish from a refrigerated case… I don’t think I quite trust it, since often it’s sitting out all day. I have eaten other types such as California Rolls, and never had a problem. That really sucks that you had the misfortune of getting sick from sushi though… I hope nothing like that ever happens to you again! 🙁

  10. jessica -

    I am very picky about where i eat sushi.. i have found the best place on long island that has ACTUALLY been voted best sushi.. very close to home.. but while at work and having craving. i go to the nearby sushi place.. the only thing is that i do not order anything raw except for my favorite place.. its just something to hold me over untill i have a chance to get to the best.. =]

  11. Lynsey -

    I live in North Dakota. We’re the most landlocked area of the world. I’m really proud of the local sushi place for always having fresh stuff, though I’m still very cautious no matter what day I visit them.

  12. Allison -

    Jessica – What restaurant is that? I may have to visit if I ever get out to the east coast. 🙂

    Lynsey – Definitely good to be cautious, especially when you don’t live near the coast! It’s really great that your local sushi place is able to have fresh fish all the time!

  13. Terra -

    Devlyn- What supplier do you get your sushi grade fish from? I live in Boise also and am wanting to know where to get good sushi grade fish. Thanks.

  14. Allison -

    I get my sushi grade fish from local Japanese supermarkets, where the fish is already filleted and marked “sashimi” or “sushi-grade.” Sorry, but I don’t know of any suppliers in Boise – I’ve heard there are some good online suppliers, but I’ve never tried them and cannot vouch for their quality.

  15. Gretchen Murphy -

    I think alot of people do not like sushi because they have eaten at inferior places with low quality. Here in South Florida there is a great span from the awesome to awful. The place I personally love is closed on Mondays and the owner is pretty cool. There are also alot of celebrities who love the place (which I forgot the name of at the moment).

  16. arowanacare -

    Hey, that’s a good share. I thought it was tuesday also. And yesh, i think most people who started off with bad sushi tends to hate them forever. Very interesting points made in general. I’m going to keep an eye out for your next post 😛

  17. appliance repair boise -

    Well, from what I’ve read sushi has to be but right and the chef needs to know what he’s doing so that parasites and other undesirables don’t wind up in the edibles. Not sure if this is true but if it is, then I wouldn’t want to combine this scenario with un-fresh raw fish. :-<
    I like cooked fish as well so I'm good with it. There are good fish restaurants in Boise too.

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