Sushi Katsu and other random delicious locales

So today is my birthday. Meaning, I had a very good excuse to stuff my face. Meaning that sushi was pretty much a requirement for today. I am a sucker for being able to eat like a vacuum cleaner without having to worry about the increasing amount of the bill. Well, assuming vacuum cleaners eat, that is. After doing on searching on ye ole Google, I found a place called Sushi Katsu, located in Aurora, which is a suburb of Denver. The restaurant itself is located in a strip mall surrounded by Korean shops (and is itself Korean-owned apparently). They offer an all-you-can-eat menu for both lunch and dinner, the lunch one being $13.95 a person. So we go with that.

The menu has your standard list of rolls plus nigiri, and you can also get appetizers along with some bento and noodle items as well. So we got a variety of rolls (crunchy spicy tuna, unagi + cucumber, a philly roll, and a few others) to split, along with an assortment of nigiri plus two orders of gyoza. Drew ate all but one of the gyozas, as he’d apparently never had them before and immediately became addicted. The rolls were good, as was the nigiri. The eel melted in my mouth, as good eel does, and similarly with the tuna. There was red tuna along with albacore (white tuna). We each tried a seared albacore nigiri, and it immediately melted in our mouths and we, in desperation, ordered more. It is super good, Drew considered it the best raw type fish he’d ever had.

Their regular menu has a huge range of specialty rolls, such as caterpillar and volcano rolls along with others they had created. For an additional $3.00 a roll, you could order one of these. We decided to go with the spicy tuna biscuit, which was listed under the ‘baked rolls’ section. This consisted of rice shaped into a disk and fried slightly, with a mound of spicy tuna on top, plus a very decorative sprig of some sort of plant plus carrot with thinly sliced avocado wrapped around it, all sitting on top of the tuna. Two of these were centered on a plate with two sides, with a heart drawn around each using spicy mayo. I wasn’t quite sure about the rice being cooked again, as it did make it a little tougher to eat, but aside from that it was really good. Drew decided to focus on gyoza, so I got to eat most of his, too. Yay! Incidentally I’ve had my share of mercury for the month.

I should note that I am describing things in detail because, though I brought my camera with me, I left it in the car. And, in fact, it is still sitting in said car. Oh well, this gives me an excuse to eat there again, which I definitely plan on doing as it was absolutely delicious.

We’d noticed a market in the same shopping center called Tana Grocery. This, of course, made me think of Tan-a in Richmond, so I wanted to stop in after we ate. Turns out it was an Ethiopian market, so we ended up picking up some red lentils plus peppercorns. Mmm…peppercorns. Had a bunch of other large containers of raw ingredients, many of them seasonings, many of them labelled in a language I was unable to identify, and most of them far cheaper then you’d pay for a similar quantity in a regular grocery store. We talked to the owner briefly, turns out used to live in Richmond until he moved to Denver 10 years ago. Small world!

After that, we hit up a market called European Deli and Grocery. I am obsessed with Mozartkugel, and would love to find some in the Denver area, so I followed a lead I got from someone over at livejournal and decided to check out this market. Most of the products there seemed more eastern European, so no mozartkugel for me. They had a bunch of products I was completely unfamiliar with, along with a fabulous assortment of tea for cheap (I got a 100 pack of green tea for $6) plus a great selection of chocolates (I’ve been nibbling all evening on a bar of dark chocolate + dried blueberries + hazelnuts). Apparently Drew and I look Polish, as when we were checking out, the woman spoke it to us, then, after seeing the blank looks on our faces most likely, switched to English. Or, maybe they don’t get too many non Euro types in there? In other news, I would at some point like to learn the basics of as many languages as possible, enough so that I can a.) tell what language it is and b.) say various polite things of the ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ variety. I mean, I didn’t even know it was Polish until Drew told me that’s what she was speaking.

Oh yeah, and they had sausages. Many, many glorious sausages. Speaking of which, I feel just awful about not having any pictures to accompany my delicious sushi. Thus, I present to you the sausage that got devoured during the last Salami Day:

salami tube

A tasty tube, indeed!

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