Sushi Samba Coral Gables Launches Sushi & Sake 101: A History Lesson in Sake Drinking and Sushi Making

Courtesy of Sushi Samba
Have you always wanted to learn to make sushi? Have you bought all the ingredients necessary, only to make a mess halfway through and end up eating the crab by itself? Yeah, we've been there.

Things are looking up thanks to Sushi & Sake 101 at Sushi Samba Coral Gables. S&S 101 is exactly what it sounds like -- a completely interactive lesson on making (and eating) sushi. You'll also have the chance to learn everything you ever wanted to know about sake -- while drinking it. The two-hour, two-part lesson will take place Tuesday, April 29, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

We had a chance to talk to executive sushi chef Eric Ou and sake sommelier Craig Tabendera about the what to expect to walk away with from the class, the infamous rice roll, and its fermented rice beverage companion.

See also: Huahua's Todd Erickson Teaches Us How to Make Hot Sauce

During the first hour, students will be guided by Sushi Samba's sake sommelier through an educational history of the Japanese alcoholic beverage made from fermented rice. The history lesson is paired with five flights of sake, as well as common myths, pairing tips, and recipes. You'll go far beyond what you think you know about sake -- hot and cold -- and explore aged, sparkling, sweet, and spicy, and even rich and round with a sweet caramel finish. Yes, we're still talking about sake.

In order to keep your alcohol tolerance satiated, Sushi Samba will provide signature dishes, tempura, sashimi, and a variety of sushi rolls throughout the class.

Part two of the class features sushi making. Executive chef Eric Ou will walk you through the history and traditions, followed by a demonstration on the selection and preparation of the fish. You'll then be guided by Eric as you create your own choice of sushi rolls. Our advice it to pick your favorite item from the menu and learn to recreate it. Once finished, you get to enjoy your masterpiece and walk away from the class with a full belly and a take-away booklet that will help you apply your sushi making knowledge at home.

New Times: How did the idea of sushi and sake develop?
Eric Ou: The idea for sushi & sake classes developed in 2006, it became the most popular class in the Sushi Samba history, and one that we now introduced at every single Sushi Samba location.

What are some misconceptions people have about sushi making that you hope to clarify?
There are a lot of misconceptions about sushi, especially surrounding the preparation of sushi rice and fish. Most people think that sushi rice and warm steamed rice are one in the same, however, the culinary approach could not be more different -- in Japan, sushi chefs spend years learning how to perfect sushi rice. Regarding the fish in sushi rolls, most people think we're just using raw pieces. In reality, only a small selection of the fish will actually be served raw. Most fish has been prepared in some fashion, whether pickling, blanching or soaking in sake prior to making it to your plate.

Location Info


180 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables, FL

Category: Restaurant

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