Archive for December, 2011


December 23rd, 2011

While a fat belly is a generally unfortunate thing to have, it’s considered culinary gold in Japanese cuisine. Toro, cut from the underside of the tuna, is one of the most treasured ingredients in sushi and sashimi.

The difference between chutoro and otoro refers to where the meat comes from. Chutoro, or “middle toro,” is posteriorly located on the tuna. Otoro, on the other hand, comes from the area just below the head and is considered much higher quality. The best of the best.

Toro is characterized by a pearly pink tint, with creamy white marbling similar to that of beef. True appreciation of this delicacy, however, is experienced not with the eyes but with the mouth. The combination of its delicate flavor and buttery, melt-in-your-mouth texture induces pure, unadulterated nautical bliss.

When the weather gets colder, the toro gets tastier. Tuna pack on the pounds during the winter to keep warm, and as a result, they’re more flavorful than ever. Although it’s available at Zama year-round, winter is the perfect time to enjoy toro – whether it’s your first time or your fiftieth.


December 14th, 2011

One of the most sought after sea snail varieties is considered to be the abalone. Harvested in far away New Zealand, this delicacy isn‘t easily obtained. Despite its rarity, the abalone has many benefits to offer.

The demand for this species has become so large that in many countries harvesting is very limited and controlled. In New Zealand, they do what they can to protect the wild abalone and have created abalone farms specifically for harvest. Keeping the two separate allows the species to thrive and repopulate without much interference.In addition to the sustainable harvest, abalone have been prized for not only their taste but their decorative shells.

Many cultures use the shells as trays to display sashimi or as jewelry pieces. Galleries carve the shells into small works of art often worn by prestigious figures and celebrities. The shell is extremely hard and comparable to opal, so the quality of the work lasts many years. Pearls from this snail are also collected and used for decoration and jewelry.

At Zama we feature delicious abalone prepared as sashimi. It’s indescribable taste and its crunchy texture adds to its appeal. Also, abalone is rich in selenium, magnesium, Vitamin B12, and Vitamin E, so keep the health benefits in mind when you’re dining away.

Uwishunu: Philly Chefs Expanding

December 9th, 2011

As you may know, Chef Zama once worked in the sushi bar of Philadelphia’s Ritz-Carlton. Now, he’s fortunate enough to open his own sushi bar in a posh hotel — in Miami. That was the source for Uwishunu’s coverage of Zama, which detailed the expansion of Philly’s top chefs. With Jose Garces headed west to California, Marc Vetri headed east to New Jersey and La Colombe Torrefaction headed to Chicago, Philadelphia is sharing the wealth when it comes to our great chefs.

As for Zama Sushi Bar’s new Miami site, the Shelborne South Beach Hotel‘s renovations are nearing completion. Maybe an escape from the approaching winter is in order.