By Samantha
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When I was 5 years old my parents took me to Ichiban in Princeton (since closed… and is now Mistral) and that’s where I got the nickname Sammy The Seal. If someone put sashimi on my plate it was gone about 2 seconds later. I remember one time I ordered an entire bowl of flying fish roe, and ate it with a spoon. Looking back now, I realize I must have been a very expensive child.

My love for sushi has only gotten stronger over the years as I’ve branched out from slurping down tuna and salmon sashimi. I’ve since discovered more flavorful fishes, like Spanish Mackerel and monkfish, thanks to Shumi.

I first discovered Shumi when I was flipping through Zagat one day back in 2012. With a food score of 28 and title of Best Sushi in New Jersey, there was no doubt in my mind I had to go… right then and there.

Let me walk you through it. You have two choices: sit at a table or sit at the sushi bar (if you can find a spot)

shumi-sushiI like to do both. The sushi bar is great if you like chatting with people and (obviously) watching the sushi be made. The only reason I sometimes prefer sitting at a table is because I can really savor each and every bite (instead of trying to carry on a conversation with the person next to me). You also get your sushi/sashimi platter all at once, and I like that because I can formulate my plan of attack. Eating sushi is a seriously scientific thing.

This is by far the freshest, most high quality fish you can get in New Jersey. When you do the Omakase (leaving it up to Chef Ike), you are ensuring that. Since we always get the Omakase, I can’t tell you what you should try and shouldn’t try. Do the Omakase. Try different things. Don’t be afraid to try anything with Monkfish Liver in it. If you can get a sushi roll with Monkfish Liver and Torro (pictured) – you have hit the jackpot.

The only other Shumi pearl of wisdom I have: go as often as you can. Your wallet may hate you, but this sushi will make you so happy you’ll regret not going more often. I know I do.

  • Start with the sushi pizza, thinly sliced salmon and Spanish mackerel seasoned with Italians seasoning, soy and spicy sauce.
  • Sometimes the rolls/sashimi have really amazing relishes/sauces that go on them. Don’t use soy sauce with those.
  • Stop by Verve in downtown Somerville before for a craft cocktail. 
About the Author

Grazin' in New Jersey since 1988

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