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Feb 3, 2009 04:42 PM

Spicy tuna on crispy rice? Why?


I'm new to LA and have been to three Japanese restaurants (Koi, Katsuya, and some small place in Weho) that have served spicy tuna and crispy rice. I tried it at each place and thought that it was awful.

What is the fascination in the LA area with this appetizer? Can someone help me understand?

Do you like it? Do you hate it? I would love to see if I'm in the norm or not.....


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    1. Folks, food habit discussions, like why someone likes chipped beef on toast, or tuna on crispy rice, are allowed on our Not About Food board. Chatty threads about personal food dislikes dilute the usefulness of our local boards, whose purpose is to share local chow tips.

      Please let us know where to find good examples of spicy tuna on rice. Or where to avoid bad examples Thanks.

      1. Sushi Iki in Tarzana makes a great version of spicy tuna on crispy rice. The rice is nicely crisped, but the tuna is what makes it great. Chef Eddie uses very good tuna for his spicy tuna and it makes the dish.

        1. Aside from the fact that I too find this dish over-rated and slightly repulsive... I've had it at Katsuya (bleh, crispy rice was cold). On a semi twist-my-arm-to-go-to-Sushi Dan-visit, a friend swore by their version (figures). It tasted the pretty much the same.

          Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice... my suggestion is to stop trying this dish and start trying something else.

          1. Azami before it changed management made a great spicy tuna on crispy rice. Rather than a flat bar of rice, the chefs there would put the spicy tuna on a little dome of rice, with the result looking like a mini volcano.

            I remember finding the spicy tuna on crispy rice at Sushi-Katsuya in Encino being pretty good.

            1 Reply
            1. Bar Hayama pushes this dish like nothing I've ever seen. Every time I've been the waiter is like, oh, and you must have the spicy tuna on crispy rice. I think Koi is really the place that really made it the dish that really made it popular in spite of fact that it's not very tasty. Regardless, the only version I've had of it that I've really liked is the one at Musha where it's basically rice cakes that you spoon spicy tuna over. Even then....