Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Monkfish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish

Chicken liver is pretty standard in the States. Kids hate it, parents make them eat it because it’s rumored to be good for the body. Monkfish liver, however is largely unknown to most people, unless you’re an avid sushi eater, which makes it exotic and makes me want to try it. Dining at Tokyo Go Go’s sushi bar, we are treated to this Japanese delicacy. It is sliced and placed atop a bed of julienned cucumbers, drizzled with Yuzu ponzu sauce and sprinkled with scallions. To get in the Japanese spirit I, of course, have a few sakes before putting this in my mouth.  It is happy hour after all. The aromas are pungent, though not necessarily bad. I try to anticipate what is coming but am completely off. Ankimo, it’s proper name, is not chewy nor gamey. It is mushy but tastes just like eating a fish, the flavor is superb, and the sauce complements the flavors of the liver very well. The sushi chef is laughing in my face as he notices my confused/kind of disgusted but not really look. The texture is hard to pin down, but best described as creamy, mushy, fishy. The mouthfeel of this dish is all wrong. Which is a shame because the flavor is umami, the fifth flavor that can only be described as part salt part sweet. Next time I will be sure to incorporate cucumber into each bite for a better texture experience. Overall Ankimo, disgusting. The only thing holy about this fish’s liver is the words that are sure to escape your lips shortly after swallowing, “Holy crap, wtf?” 3174 16th St. (415)864-2288

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