Sushi rice brands
I've been making sushi for decades. (I apprenticed to a Japanese chef.)
I know the su is very important; I have a vinegar mix that I've been tinkering with for years and some amazing mirin. I have heard that the fresher the rice the less pronounced the differences.
For years I used Kokuho Rose, Calrose, & Nashiki. Several years back I found out my favorite sushi bar uses Tamanishiki and I use it now; I love it's depth. I am, however, always on the look out for new brands.
Another good sushi bar uses Furusato, which apparently means "Neighborhood". (My teacher wanted us to learn about food, not non-food vocabulary.) I have also heard of SunRice and Koshihikari.
Anyone here heard of these brands? Others? Comments?
My mom always wants "New Crop" of almost any brand. She says it does make a difference. I have no idea...Have you tried Tamaki?
About the most expensive rice here on Oahu, where people are VERY picky about rice, is Koshihikari Premium.
Nishiki is the brand I use for sushi. It is described on the bag as medium grain rice. It works just fine for me. I believe Calrose is a specific variety of rice rather than a brand.
Lately I've started using "Select Kagayaki," a California premium short grain rice for sushi. Well, I use it for just plain boiled rice too. It is polished with a new process that doesn't use water, and one result is a very low residue in the finished product. The rinse time to get the water to run clear is incredibly fast compared to other sushi grade rices I have used in the past. Hey, call me a conservationist if you will, but the truth is I just get tired of standing at the sink rinsing and rinsing and rinsing rice!
Oh, yeah... terrific flavor too!
Here's more info: http://tinyurl.com/2ulccm
I find this interesting, because I've been finding that the kagayaki takes way *more* time to wash! I feel like I'm washing and washing and washing until finally it's kind of almost OK. The flavor is OK but it seems become soft quite easily. I've been tossing in a small handful of mochi rice together with each batch to help balance out the texture.
For now, I'm going back to tamaki gold, which seems to be a bit firmer/sturdier. (I also like the tamaki haiga rice, but I don't think I'd use it for sushi)