Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Akira. I had a big shock today -- Yurika, my niece's little sister died suddenly. She was only 39 and in good health, so it's a shock. I'll be leaving town tomorrow for Long Beach/Palm Springs with an open return so there may be a pause in my blogging.

I had a strong feeling yesterday that I should have my car serviced right away, and made an early morning appointment this morning. It was just for routine maintenance (can you believe 50K on my hybrid 2004 Prius?!) , but it was a good thing I followed my intuition since I'll be driving long distance from tomorrow.

I took advantage of being in the city to do some business and have lunch with my friend Masami, at the Sapphire on Sacramento Street. Sapphire does a decent job for what it is (like Panda Express, but in great surroundings) and the food is very inexpensive. Took the cable car back to my car, and came home and knocked about for awhile.

Feeling like I needed to be out with some light companions to get my mind off things, I decided to go to one of my favorite hang-outs, Akira Sushi Bar & Restaurant in San Rafael. The owner, Hiro, was off today, but his staff were doing a marvelous job of putting out fabulous sushi creations and keeping a friendly and comfortable atmosphere. I sat at the bar and enjoyed catching up with Takeshi (see in photo above) and the other friendly staff.

I caught up with the news at Akira -- there is a website now, and they are expanding into San Anselmo. From the looks of the picture on the website, it looks like they are taking over the previous "Yahiro" sushi place. Akira should be an exciting new treat for the neighborhood as it is consistently excellent. Success seems to be flowing through the door at Akira, and they deserve it!

Tonight I enjoyed the mushroom miso (above) and the chirashizushi (below.) Surprisingly, I had never tried the chirashi before, and it was really a great mixture of fresh and beautifully arranged sashimi over sushi rice with marinated mushroom surprises tucked in. I think it is going to become one of my favorites, although it's hard not to have a lot of 'favorites' there!

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