BEST JAPANESE FUSION Phoenix 2005 - Sea Saw
Sea Saw is the province of Chef Nobuo Fukuda, renowned for his "tapanese" cuisine, a marriage of the Spanish concept of little noshes called tapas with high-end Japanese eats. It's all about the rare combinations of delicate flavors Fukuda brings to the table: kabocha (Japanese pumpkin) purée topped with a bit of curry and a little pile of caviar; chilled, pan-seared duck breast in a soy-zinfandel reduction; white fish "carpaccio" with thinly sliced ginger in a bath of yuzu juice with sesame seeds. It ain't cheap. The portions are nouvelle-size at best (read: small, people). Everything is prepared slowly in front of you by Fukuda and his staff, and by the time your bank account is depleted, you may have to use your remaining five bucks to buy a couple of hamburgers to fill the gaping hole in your tummy. Somehow, it's all worth it, because Sea Saw's taste sensations are so varied, refined and creative that you'll willingly max out your credit card for them. Come to think of it, identity theft would come in handy here. Why, with some rich dood's Amex in your pocket, you could load up at Sea Saw until you're actually stuffed! Anyone out there got a copy of Jerry Colangelo's Gold Card?