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Feb 19, 2010 03:09 PM

Love those Blue Crab Hand Rolls! Whose are the best?

I first experienced the wonders of a Blue Crab Hand Roll at Sushi Nozawa many years ago. Nozawa-san’s may be the biggest, but not necessarily the best. Nobi at Sasabune offers a fine roll as do Hiro-san at Sushi Koyo and Go-san at Go’s Mart. Ken at Jubei also prepares a nice roll. However, for overall savor, texture and addictiveness, I find the rolls hand delivered by Katsu at Sushi Wasabi to reign above the rest. Notably, Katsu’s rolls are indeed the smallest I’ve had (ah, less may really be more). He uses Texas Blue Crab and a slightly different nori with a unique (toasted) crispiness to the bite.

Please note that I am not referring to a fried soft-shell crab or other cooked roll. I am only interested in the chopped fresh crab variety served slightly chilled over warm rice wrapped in nori.

I know of other sushi bars that serve them (Zo, Kiriko, Echigo, etc.), but I’ve yet to sample them. Your opinions as to who’s are the best and where I should seek to enjoy the finest of these delectable “cigars of the sea” would be greatly appreciated.

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  1. Kiriko & Zo get my vote (a tie for the best blue crab hand roll). Sasabune in second place.

    Echigo isn't even in the equation.

    7 Replies
    1. re: J.L.

      I would throw in my two cents for Dokoro Ki Ra La on lil Santa Monica. They use very little mayo, the size of the roll is very nice and the ratio of rice/crab is spot on. The rice is warm so you have to eat the roll right away.

      1. re: js76wisco

        Hey, js76wisco - can you (or anyone) please tell me more about this Dokoro Ki Ra La?
        I am intrigued
        The Yelp pics look excellent.
        The website is notable for their piety to quality "[a]midst the declining quality of Japanese food in Los Angeles."
        Nice! Yet, I am sure that many truly terrible places offer similar homilies online.

        Is it really great?


        1. re: J.L.

          Kiriko is excellent but i think the best one i've ever had is at Nishi-Ya.

          1. re: Clyde

            I'm with you on the one at Nishi-Ya, really wonderful.

          2. re: J.L.

            Kiriko makes this mayo-phobe happy by making it all crab inside no problem.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                I say Zo followed by the ones at Nozawa and the one at Go's Mart.

                Good good stuff.

                1. re: kevin

                  Yabu on La Cienega in West Hollywood has THE BEST baked crab hand roll. It's dungeness crab and it is warm and super delicious...enjoy

                  1. re: vajrini

                    I'm not a fan of any of that baked dynamite dishes.

              2. Gotta go with Sasabune.

                1. zo = perfect ratio of crab, mayo, wasabi, rice. i didn't like sushi wasabi's much but then again, i tried it several years back so perhaps it's much improved.

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