Is Shiki the Best Sushi In Seattle? Don't Ask

Puffer Fish.jpg
This fish will kill you, but it didn't kill me because I'm a real man.
What's the best sushi restaurant in Seattle? I'm not even going to touch that question with a ten-foot pole, or my cock, whichever is longer (note: my cock is longer). So even though I'm not going to opine on the best sushi in Seattle, I WILL say that Shiki is pretty good. What's more, Shiki is notable because Chef Ken Yamamoto is one of only SEVENTEEN people in the United States licensed to prepare fugu, which is puffer fish sushi. If it's prepared incorrectly, fugu WILL KILL THE EVER LIVING SHIT OUT OF YOU.

The fugu sashimi was pretty enough: milky translucent slices, arranged on the plate in gleaming concentric circles. Too bad it was such a letdown. Fugu is rather bland and a bit gummy on the bite. The closest sashimi I could compare it to is flounder, though to be fair flounder is lighter in texture. Let's just say fugu tastes like flounder sashimi that's been sitting out awhile.

How much will this dangerous dinner set you back? It's $220 per person, and you must order 24 hours in advance. The fishing season is short; in fact, Shiki only stocks fugu December through April. As of this writing Shiki's kitchen has THREE puffer fish left, so if you want to try fugu before December I suggest you move quickly. But if I were going to eat something that tastes like old fish and could kill me later, I'd rather just go down on your mom. And if you wanted to be Captain Ahab and take out your vengeance on some marine life, just punch a dolphin in the face.

Shiki also sells shabu shabu, which is Japanese hot pot. At Shiki, $35 got us a gigantic plate of Kobe beef, finely marbled and sliced so thinly it was barely more substantial than a beef- flavored wind. The waitress brought a hot plate and a small pot of boiling water in which to dip the beef. If you cook it for more than five seconds, you're stupid. A big-ass plate of vegetables accompanied: onions, enoki mushrooms, celery, some sort of herb that resembled carrot greens, and some strange slippery stretchy noodles that turned perfectly clear when boiled. After we were done eating and all of the stuff had been boiled, they brought out a soup, made from the water we boiled everything in, with udon noodles and tiny rings of scallion.

Shiki is, in general, awesome. Is it the best sushi in Seattle? I would rather debate about which faith is the One True Religion than answer that question.

Rating: 7 puffers out of 10

Shiki is located at 4 W Roy St in Queen Anne. For reservations call 206-281-1352

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