Irresponsible Knife Owner of the Day: Samurai Sushi Edition

Diners at the highly rated (2 Michelin stars) Greenwich Village sushi restaurant Soto were treated to a floor show along with their sashimi Tuesday night when chef Sotohiro Kosugi took umbrage with a customer complaint and went on a 15 minute pan banging, knife swinging tantrum.

From NY Daily News:

“The chef goes crazy, screaming in the restaurant,” recalls our frightened foodie. “The people go silent and the chef is banging dishes, walking back and forth through the restaurant swinging his knife. He didn’t calm down for a good 10 to 15 minutes!”

Well-heeled diners who weren’t wary of Soto’s experimental dishes, like Ecuadorean tuna and pearly white Toyama shrimp from Japan, were certainly unnerved by the armed ranting and raving.

“Everyone was stunned,” the patron tells us. “The knife was 8 inches long! He stood over two men holding up tuna in a plastic bag, yelling, ‘This is the tuna that I ordered! Then he sliced the plastic, saying, ‘This is how I buy it.’ Then he sat down on his knee and said, ‘This is how we do it here.’ ”

Apparently the customer complained that there was too much fat on his tuna, which is strange because it has always been my understanding that the higher the fat content on the tuna, the more desirable it is in Japanese cuisine.

The Belushi samurai character from SNL was the first thing I thought of when reading the headline, though as I read further it also reminds me of Caddyshack when Rodney Dangerfield sends his steak back to the kitchen with instructions to tell the chef that “it still has marks from where the jockey was hitting it”. Either way, chefs tend to be a temperamental bunch, who are good with knives.




  1. Mike L says:

    I used to watch the Japanese Iron Chef TV show before it became popular. Watched it without translation no less. I rejoiced as they announced Iron Chef America. That is until….Bobby Flay beat Morimoto and Bobby jumped up on the steam table. Morimoto freaked out. He almost stormed off the show. Bobby had “insulted ” the dignity and honor of Sushi Chefs by placing his feet on the table. I stopped watching the show then and there.

  2. Roger says:

    “The tuna is too fatty” is actually a pretty common complaint western diners give Japanese restaurants.

  3. Tom in Oregon says:

    Also reminds me of the home shopping network guy breaking the katana.

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Irresponsible Knife Owner of the Day: Samurai Sushi Edition

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