Enjoying Sake at Elk Grove Restaurants: It’s All about the Temperature

For sushi purists who frequent Elk Grove restaurants that specialize in Japanese cuisine, selecting the perfectly crafted roll is a main priority. However, the meal isn’t really complete unless it’s being served alongside sake or Japanese beer. On top of that, the manner of serving sake differs slightly with each variety – some sake are best served cold, others warm.

The reason that temperature plays an important role in serving sake comes from the ideal in Japanese food culture that flavors should be simple and distinct from one another. With high quality sake, certain flavors become more evident at different temperature ranges. To experience these flavors, the sake needs to be served at just the right temperature so that each flavor can be properly discerned.

So, at what temperature should you serve which sake? While most brewers will suggest an ideal temperature to serve their sake, it often follows a certain pattern. This was the subject discussed by Noritoshi Kanai, a living legend in the Japanese food world who was responsible for introducing sushi to the West, and who has been anointed by the Japanese emperor as a “Living National Treasure,” in a presentation he delivered in 2010.

Entitled “Sake Temperatures: How Hot Is Too Hot?” he revealed that there are eight temperature ranges at which sake can be enjoyed. Each type of sake should fit into one of these temperature ranges – piping hot not being one of them – and the following general guidelines usually apply:

Fragrant sake like gingo or daigingo: Drink chilled, around 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but don’t drink it cold, which will kill the delicate aroma and taste (like drinking white wine too cold).

Unpasteurized sake (namazake): Drink it a little cooler, in the 41-50 degree range, to bring out its crisp, fresh taste.

Rich sake like junmai or honjozo: These are perfect served room temperature or warm — kan. What is warm? Body temperature (98 degrees) up to 110 degrees. (Perfect with hot pot, by the way.)

If you don’t know the ideal temperature range to serve a specific type of sake, however, Mr. Kanai indicates that you can’t go wrong serving practically any type of sake at room temperature. Also, should you get your hands on truly high-quality sake, temperature becomes less of an issue. Top shelf sake can be enjoyed warm, at room temperature, or chilled – just not too cold, and again, never too hot.

With this in mind, remember that sake served at the right temperature so that the rich aroma and delicious mix of flavors is enhanced is something you can expect from the best restaurant in Elk Grove, CA. Head off to restaurants like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar to enjoy some great sakes.

 

(Source: the right temperature to serve sake: a guide, The Japanese Food Report, February 7, 2010)

Advertisements

One of the Leading Restaurants in Sacramento Offers a Gluten-Free Menu

After a long week at the office, one of the best ways to unwind is by dining out with your colleagues at renowned restaurants in Sacramento. However, some of your co-workers won’t just be scanning the menu for the food; they’ll also be on the lookout for ingredients that contain gluten.

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, and triticale, which helps food made from these grains maintain their shape. Unfortunately, some people suffer from celiac disease, which causes them to experience adverse reactions to gluten. This article from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness’ website offers an overview of this condition:

Celiac disease is an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food. What does this mean? Essentially the body is attacking itself every time a person with celiac consumes gluten.

Celiac disease is triggered by consumption of the protein called gluten, which is found in wheat, barley and rye. When people with celiac disease eat foods containing gluten, their immune system responds by damaging the finger-like villi of the small intestine. When the villi become damaged, the body is unable to absorb nutrients into the bloodstream, which can lead to malnourishment.

Aside from malnutrition, celiac disease can also cause unpleasant symptoms such as bloating, constipation, headaches, and fatigue. Left untreated, it can lead to even more complications, such as the development of osteoporosis, thyroid disease, and other autoimmune diseases.

As such, dining out often causes more dread than pleasure for celiac sufferers as they might inadvertently consume gluten. They might also find themselves going to a restaurant with friends, only to find that there are no gluten-free items they can order.

Fortunately, leading Sacramento restaurants like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar have created special gluten-free menus just for these diners. They can feast on items like sashimi or a variety of healthy and gluten-free sushi rolls. Other options include items like pickled cucumber salad, and teriyaki dishes made with gluten-free sauce.

According to Harvard University, as many as two million Americans have celiac disease, though only about 300,000 of them have been diagnosed conclusively with it. With so many people suffering from celiac disease, it’s reassuring to know that restaurants have begun modifying their menus to accommodate people with this condition.

 

(Source: CELIAC DISEASE, National Foundation for Celiac Awareness)

Japanese Restaurants in Sacramento, CA Embrace Tradition and Invention

The 68th Japanese Food & Culture Bazaar is exactly as it sounds: a celebration of culinary excellence and love for tradition that makes all things Japanese stand out in cosmopolitan California. A Sacramento Bee feature details preparations that transpired at the event, particularly the significant contributions made by the Sacramento Buddhist Church. In the spirit of the Bazaar, it’s not just the young ones who shouldered most of the work:

Tradition has driven the bazaar since its inception, of course. The dishes are prepared from family recipes handed down through generations, and the arts reflect a millennia-old culture. Many of the church member volunteers have been its lifeblood for decades, including some who were there at the start, such as Mitzie Muramoto, 89, and Molly Kimura, 90.

The experience can be roughly summed up as a mix of old and new, which is another thing that has allowed Japanese cuisine to remain fresh and contemporary while retaining its original identity. While ordinary people can create their own sushi and teriyaki recipes, these pale in comparison to the originals made with the knowledge passed down from multiple generations.

For instance, Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, one of the best restaurants in Sacramento, CA, follows suit by providing both traditional and modern incarnations of renowned Japanese dishes (like hamishi and gluten-free teriyaki). The chefs behind such creations know that Japanese cuisine is more intertwined with the culture that created it than most people think.

Traditionally, the Japanese prepared food according to the season. In spring, for example, most of dishes would incorporate bamboo shoots rather than chestnuts, which are abundant during fall. Fish and soy sauce are staples throughout the seasons, though, since the Japanese typically lack meat and dairy in their diet. As demonstrated in the Japanese Food & Culture Bazaar, recipes typically differ from one family to another.

Teriyaki is perhaps the best example because its taste largely hinges on the ingredients that go into the making of the sauce. Teriyaki sauce is typically made from soy sauce, sake, ginger, and sugar. Other variants make use of garlic, honey, and sesame oil. As such, teriyaki dishes served in the best Japanese midtown Sacramento restaurants are bound to have rather unique and tangy flavors. This only goes to show just how Japanese cuisine changes constantly while keeping certain things the same.

 

(Source: Japanese Bazaar is much more than food and arts, The Sacramento Bee, August 3, 2014)

Sushi at Roseville Japanese Restaurants Bring East and West Together

America’s relationship with sushi and Japanese cuisine in general is relatively young. According to Food52, an online community for chefs and cooks all over the world, it was only during the 1960s that sushi was placed on the U.S. food map by one small restaurant in Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo that catered to Japanese and American businessmen. When Japanese cuisine finally made waves in other cities like Chicago and New York, only then did sushi become a nationwide hit.

With the introduction of the Philadelphia and California rolls, though, sushi has since become westernized to the point that most people don’t know the difference between sushi and maki anymore. Fortunately, certain Japanese restaurants in Roseville, CA, like Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, serve both authentic and American-style Japanese dishes, and reward loyal patrons with nifty perks and merchandise that other Japanese restaurants don’t offer.

The easiest way to distinguish traditional sushi from a westernized roll is to analyze the ingredients. Sushi typically features rice laced with vinegar then topped with raw fish, other meat, and/or vegetables. Maguro or “tuna sushi” is probably what most Americans refer to when they think about sushi, since this dish is very simple as far as ingredients and presentation are concerned. Saba or “mackerel sushi,” on the other hand, is quite different because the fish needs to be preserved first to maintain its rich taste during preparation. Meanwhile, kani or “crab sushi” stands out from the rest because it is always served cooked.

Anything that deviates from these standard recipes is likely to be a westernized form of sushi. California rolls are a great example because their name, presentation, and choice of ingredients are anything but traditional. California rolls are actually a type of maki (i.e. rolled sushi) and are usually made from avocado and crab meat, which are then lodged inside rolls of rice California Rolls have seaweed wrap. Exciting Roseville restaurants mix things up by adding other ingredients into the recipe like cream cheese, mayonnaise, and sesame seeds.

While many people prefer authentic sushi over westernized ones, and some vice versa, this doesn’t change the fact that sushi is now a part of the American palate. New recipes are bound to be introduced in the future and enhance America’s enduring love for Japanese cuisine.

(Source: The History of Sushi in the U.S., Food52, November 29, 2013)

One of the Best Restaurants in Roseville Offers Key Sushi-making Tips

When it comes to bite-sized delicacies, few dishes can get anywhere near the popularity of sushi. Between 2000 and 2005, U.S. consumption of these tasty morsels increased by 40%, and sushi restaurants now represent a $2 billion industry.

If you’re one of the many people who can’t get their fill of sushi, why not make your own rolls at home? Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, one of the best restaurants in Roseville, offers a few crucial tips to nascent sushi masters like you:

Rice” to the Occasion

If sushi were a painting, rice would be its canvas. As such, Gourmet.com reminds newbie sushi makers to pay special attention to buying and preparing rice:

The single most important element of sushi-making is the cooking of the rice. It’s so important, in fact, that future sushi chefs in Japan spend the first two of their seven years of formal training learning to master this step. For the best shot at success, be sure to buy the right stuff: Japanese medium-grain sushi rice. A few of my favorite brands are Kokuho Rose and Nishiki, but you can also opt for Koshihikari Premium or Tamanishiki, all of which can be found in large supermarkets, specialty stores, or online. Whichever you choose, remember that the type of rice is more important than the brand: Do not attempt to make sushi with anything but sushi rice. Other types contain lower levels of amylose (the sugar found in rice grains) and will not achieve the required sticky texture.

Avoid Sticky Fingers

Sushi rice needs to be sticky in order to hold its signature shape. Unfortunately, the rice grains will also stick to your hands as you attempt to roll sushi, a challenge all sushi neophytes face. To prevent this problem, keep your hands moist at all times by keeping a bowl of water on hand. Whenever things get too sticky, just dab your hands into the water so you can handle the rice without trouble.

Don’t Overstuff!

Of course, the real stars of sushi rolls are the ingredients tucked inside. As delicious as the filling may be, though, resist the urge to stuff too much of it into your rolls (this applies to the rice as well). If you do, you won’t be able to roll the sushi all the way through; and if you somehow manage to, it will simply burst open, being overstuffed.

If you want to learn more pro-tips on sushi making, you can also take private sushiology classes care of leading restaurants in Roseville, CA like Mikuni Sushi. Through these courses, you can become a sushi master in your own right!

 

(Source: EIGHT GREAT TIPS FOR HOMEMADE SUSHI ROLLS, Gourmet.com, March 21, 2012)