Bite of the Week: Nigiri Sampler at Gohan Sushi

The Nigiri Sampler at Gohan Sushi // Photo by Tj Turner

The Nigiri Sampler at Gohan Sushi // Photo by Tj Turner

Bite of the Week is a weekly feature showcasing an exceptional meal or dish, curated by The Growler.

Good sushi is hard to come by. The number of places in the greater Minneapolis–St. Paul metro that do it reliably can be counted on your fingers, perhaps even the fingers of one hand. We wrote recently about how Hyvee (of all places!) deserves a spot on the roster of talented sushi slingers, and here’s another one out of left field: Gohan Sushi, which isn’t a restaurant at all. It’s a single chef laboring at top speed in a black cylindrical food truck trailer that looks like an incredibly chic tipped over trash barrel.

The truck does chirashi (raw fish and fish bowls), hand rolls, and poke, but we were drawn to the menu’s top item: six maki rolls and four pieces of nigiri for $18, all omakase (chef’s choice). It’s enough money, we thought, to be a serious stab at sushi, and the lack of customer input suggests that the freshness and availability of the fish was the important thing, not catering to a market that gets squeamish beyond the safe waters of tuna and salmon.

It’s not enough to say that the sushi is excellent (although it was). The fish was luscious and vibrant in texture and flavor, the rice was yielding and delicate without being mushy or over-seasoned, and each piece was finished or flanked with appropriate garnishes in a way that would be appreciated at an upscale restaurant, to say nothing of a big black barrel parked on Marquette Avenue. Real sushi (for the antithesis, see whatever is being peddled at any given all-you-can-eat “pan-Asian” lunch buffet) takes delicate and great ingredients that can speak for themselves, and that’s what is coming out of Gohan Sushi’s trailer.

The Nigiri Sampler at Gohan Sushi // Photo by Tj Turner

THE DISH: Nigiri Sampler, $18

THE PLACE: Gohan Sushi food truck (track its location and hours via social media)

THE REASON: This is clean, luscious, simple, gorgeous sushi, served in an unlikely streetside setting