It was just a few weeks ago that I walked into Teppo, the sushi restaurant on Lower Greenville Avenue, and stumbled on the Spanish mackerel tataki. The restaurant offers various chef's selections, which are a decent way to introduce yourself to fish you might not have tried on your own.
Convince your waitress that you're an adventurous eater when you order, or sit at the bar and talk to your chef directly while stealing glances at the baseball game on the television behind him. The chefs are watching too. Good things will happen.
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While stealing glances at every other pitch, the chef mixed a small dice of mackerel with ginger and chives for a simple, yet delicious preparation that was truly moving. In fact it was so good I was inclined to order more mackerel (this time as sushi) and ask the chef what the secret was.
Like all sushi, freshness is paramount to flavor, but mackerel is especially sensitive to time spent out of water. Oily fishes (mackerel, sardines) break down quickly once they're pulled from the sea. Take a bite of mackerel fresh from the boat and you'll note clean and briny oceanic flavors. Three days later that same fish will taste like cat food.
The mackerel I had that Tuesday was so amazing because not only was it high quality, but it had come in that day. Mackerel comes in other days as well, but it always comes in Tuesdays. And it has blown my mind every Tuesday I've returned.
If you've tried mackerel before and you've found it too fishy, it's time to give this oily fish a shot. Fresh Spanish mackerel, ginger and chives make for such a compelling bite. Also, the Rangers take on the A's tonight; it should be a good one.