Simanaitis Says

On cars, old, new and future; science & technology; vintage airplanes, computer flight simulation of them; Sherlockiana; our English language; travel; and other stuff


寿司が大好きです! Sushi ga daisuki desu! I love sushi! This artful Japanese presentation of vinegared rice, seafood and other delicacies offers a variety of tastes; a sushi bar offers a congenial setting for enjoying these essences of Japanese culture. And I’ve found an entertaining way to sharpen knowledge of Japanese seafood, not to say the appetite: a card game called Sushi Bar.


Card Game Sushi Bar, edited by Hokuseisha Co. Ltd,, 2005.

The card game is a sushi variation of Concentration, that classic card game in which one’s kids and grandkids regularly trounce their elders amid much laughter all around.


Sushi Bar comes with seafood cards to be matched, instructions in Japanese and English and, below, six handsomely printed postcards.


To play, the cards are dealt face-down and players rotate turning up two of them. If the cards match, the player keeps the pair and continues until two unmatched cards are turned up. The unmatched two are returned exactly to their original places, and the next player gets a turn. Winner is the player accumulating the most pairs.

Played with a traditional deck of cards, two deuces is the obvious match. Sushi Bar makes use of many Japanese seafoods having two-character names, 青魚, aozakana, ao = blue, sakana = fish, bluefish, as well as its name familiar to Japanese, mutsu. A more familiar sushi offering to many is 鮪, maguro, tuna.


Japanese Blue-fish, mutsu in sushi parlance.

Sushi Bar has 29 matching pairs with artful illustrations of each fish and its sushi presentation, along with information about its sourcing and preparation. Mutsu, for instance, is a rich and fatty fish caught in wintertime. Its skin is tough, though blanching the piece adds sweetness served with the skin left on.


Tuna, maguro, toro when it’s the most exquisite (and expensive) variety.

The Maguro Sushi card mentions its grading and pricing according to fat content. Its most expensive variety, toro, comes from the belly of blue-fin tuna, is light pink, extraordinarily tender and melts in the mouth.

Just as traditional Concentration has its wild cards (and maybe house rules), the Sushi Game contains four extra cards: murasaki, soy sauce, which confers one extra draw; agari, green tea, which gives two extra draws; sake, sweet rice wine, which gives three—and the dreaded Fishbones card that causes a loss of turn.


Wish for the Soy sauce, Green tea or Sake, but not the dreaded Fishbones!

All in good fun, and a great way to learn more about the usual maguro/tuna, tai/red sea bream, ika/squid and unagi/freshwater eel.

Sushi Bar taught me that a New Year’s Day tai (served grilled and whole, pointed to the head of the table) is the Japanese equivalent of American roast turkey at holiday time.


Red sea bream, tai, is more than a sushi choice; it’s Japanese holiday fare.

The game also encourages me to sample sushi choices I’ve never tried. I’ve used Bonito flakes in preparing Japanese stock; its sushi variant, katsuo, sounds tasty with the skin left on, the flesh slightly grilled.


Bonito, katsuo, may be served sushi-style with grated ginger.

I must give this one a try. Katsuo, onegaitashimasu; Bonito, please. ds

© Dennis Simanaitis,, 2015

3 comments on “SUSHI GAME

  1. Justine
    February 18, 2015

    Hello, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your blog in Ie, it looks fine but whenn opening in Internet Explorer,
    it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Other then that, very good blog!

    • simanaitissays
      February 18, 2015

      Thanks for the heads-up. I have no Internet Explorer problem with it on my computer, but will contact WordPress to see if something is amiss.

  2. Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It if truth be told was once a
    leisure account it. Glance complex to far delivered
    agreeable from you! By the way, how can we be
    in contact?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


This entry was posted on February 9, 2015 by in Just Trippin' and tagged , .
%d bloggers like this: