Sushi School in Session

Eating sushi at your favorite Japanese restaurant, and you keep getting evil glares from the sushi chef? Perhaps you're not doing it right. Here are some basic tips to move from Sushi Fool to Sushi Cool:

1.  Be patient: at restaurants, sushi is made-to-order. You’ll be rewarded by sitting back and enjoying some sake while your rolls are crafted.

2.  Don’t ask “What is fresh?” You only look like a dolt. If you go to a quality restaurant, the chef has taken care to assure it’s all fresh.

3. Chopsticks are not necessary. In fact, traditionally sushi is eaten with the fingers. And for all that is holy, don’t use a fork.

4. If you do use chopsticks, don’t rub them together. It insinuates the restaurant uses cheap quality, and the last thing you need is an angry sushi chef with a deboning knife in hand.

5. Don’t spear your food with chopsticks. Please. This is why we can’t have nice things.

6. Try the sushi the way the chef envisioned it and prepared it; don’t fall into the trap that you must always slather on extra wasabi or drown pieces in soy sauce.

7. It’s generally frowned upon to mix wasabi in with soy sauce before applying to sushi, but if you must, don’t add a lot and slosh it around into a putrid-hued slurry.

8. The soy sauce is a complement to the dish, not an ingredient. Pour a small amount into the side bowl, use sparingly, and, with nigiri, turn over the piece and dip in the fish side only.

9. Most sushi is meant to be eaten in one bite. You’ll know when you need two bites.

See our picks for the top sushi restaurants in Hampton Roads.

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