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Source for Fresh Wasabi root (GTA)?

cybergod Aug 29, 2007 06:52 PM

Has any chowhound ever tracked down a source for real wasabi in the GTA? We had sushi at Blue Ribbon in NYC last week, where they grated fresh wasabi at the sushi bar to serve alongside some very yummy maki and nigiri. Much more mild and interesting than the faux-wasabi paste that one usually gets.

  1. SherylKirby Sep 7, 2007 05:09 AM

    I've seen it occasionally at Sanko on Queen West.

    1. d
      deepcreek Sep 7, 2007 04:52 AM

      Pacific Coast Wasabi in BC sells fresh sawa (semi-aquatic) wasabi for $220/kilo + shipping - more expensive if you order less.

      They also have field-grown (oka) wasabi, for $160/kilo fresh or $110-$130/100 g. freeze-dried, which "lasts forever in the freezer and delivers much of the fresh wasabi flavour with less hassle" [according to an article in "The Art of Eating", April, 2007).

      604 351 0969 or wasabia.ca

      1. k
        kumakuma Sep 6, 2007 08:51 PM

        I've had omakase dinner at kaiseki-sakura before, and they serve
        fresh wasabi and shark skin grater on sashimi course, and you
        get to grate as much as you want. It tasts so much better than
        tube wasabi!

        1. lilith Aug 29, 2007 10:38 PM

          Try Taro's Fish in J-Town. I saw hon-wasabi once or twice (mind you, the price is outrageous). You'd also need a special grater made with shark skin, which is another expensive item.
          Personally I think tube wasabi is just fine, for the quality of the fish we get in Toronto. If you were in the Tsukiji fish market, or if you are rich enough to have the fish flown to you the same day, sure, hon-wasabi would be a must, but hey...

          5 Replies
          1. re: lilith
            chiujason Aug 30, 2007 05:31 AM

            Agree with lilith. Taro's Fish has had fresh wasabi a lot of the times I've been there.

            You don't need the shark skin grater though, one of these will do just fine, quite a few places in Tokyo give these to you at the table to grate your own little chunk of wasabi:

            1. re: chiujason
              lilith Aug 30, 2007 09:31 AM

              Wasabi grated with 'just any' grater vs. shark skin grater makes a total difference!
              If you are spending $$$ for hon-wasabi, DON'T spoil it! please, please, please, use the shark skin and be gentle, grate slowly in a circular motion. This makes the wasabi creamy and fragrant.

              I found a good read in English FYI

              1. re: lilith
                cybergod Aug 30, 2007 10:55 AM

                Thanks for the advice!

                1. re: lilith
                  chiujason Aug 30, 2007 12:32 PM

                  Hmm... interesting! Thanks for the link!

                  1. re: lilith
                    ace123 Sep 7, 2007 05:23 AM

                    Good reading material. Thanks.

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