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article imageOp-Ed: Despite the crisis in Japan, New York's Sushi Yasuda delights Special

By Michael Krebs     May 5, 2011 in Food
New York - Among Manhattan's foodies and its armies of sushi snobs, and against a backdrop of disturbing angst over the nuclear crisis in Japan, New York's Sushi Yasuda thrives by its fresh delights.
Given the devastating and nearly abstract reach of the nuclear disaster that has unfolded in Japan and that has been introduced into Japanese waters, one might think twice before considering a sophisticated sushi dinner among offerings found in those rare American restaurants where fish found only in Japanese waters are regularly featured.
However, Sushi Yasuda, nestled in New York City's bustling east side and behaving almost like a modern sushi speakeasy in the shy and curiously unbranded monochrome fish emblem it has fashioned above its simple glass doors, alleviates the universe's known concerns and does so with a fresh flexibility that plays tacitly and erotically with the palate. The raw and radiant fish on Sushi Yasuda's plates simmer and sing like ancient and stunningly beautiful sirens, yet there are no razor-edged endings; instead, the killing is found in the simple melting of the flesh and in the variety of the species that have provided the rainbow of delightful options available to the discerning and spoiled consumer.
This is a restaurant that brings the dimension. The fatty tuna in its seemingly innocent pink embrace; the butter fish that lives as it does in the moist cloud of its name; the yellow tail that gives to the tongue's dance floor; and the variety of eel that are equal to the subtlety of Yasuda's home made glaze; the offerings position this restaurant at the pinnacle of American sushi experiences.
Sushi Yasuda is not a scene. One will not find the club-like lighting of Nobu, Megu, Blue Ribbon, and other New York City sushi haunts. It is not intended to be an environment for the perpetually bored and the infinitely over-exposed. Instead, Sushi Yasuda is a platform. It is a foodie's raw and ravenous spectrum, wrapped in bamboo walls and punctuated with a knowledgeable and attentive staff that are easy and willing ambassadors for the adventurous and welcoming palate.
The Yasuda experience is arresting and delightful, all of it delivered on an eclectic collection of plates and platters that remind its inhabitants of the artistry in Japanese culture that the rest of the world simply cannot emulate. However, it can try.
And in Manhattan there remains a warm feeling for those willing to try.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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