Secret Sushi Returns

Takeshi Uchida at Fresh

Grocery store sushi doesn’t usually  blow my skirt up, but when Takeshi Uchida’s behind the tobiko, well, that’s a different story entirely.

The former Go Fish and current Hana Japanese itamae will be serving up his own freshly-made sushi from 11:30am to 2pm Monday through Friday at Fresh by Lisa Hemenway (5755 Mountain Hawk Way, Santa Rosa, 595-1048), an upscale gourmet market that features both prepared and fresh foods, a casual cafe and coffee shop.

Takeshi-san will be moonlighting behind the counter during lunch for eat-in orders and will prepare pre-mad takeout sushi for the late afternoon and evening crowd. With more than 20 years in the biz, Uchida’s skills are as sharp as his knives, putting him (at least in my book) in a similar league with the venerable Sam Ogura of Yao-Kiku; Ken Tominaga of Hana Japanese and Hiro Yamamoto of Hiro’s in Petaluma.

Cindy Pawlcyn’s fish-centric Go Fish recently changed format, dropping sushi from the menu and reopening in late Augustas a Mediterranean bistro called Brassica. Pawlcyn’s reasoning: “It was important for me to transition from a purely seafood-centric menu as an advocate for (the aquarium’s) Seafood Watch program, supporting sustainably sourced seafood,” she said.

Uchida, you may remember, was an early BiteClub find years ago when he was doing a pop-up sushi stand each week out of the Oddfellow’s Hall in Santa Rosa. We’ve missed our daily lunch visits, so Uchida’s take-out is a welcome return to memories of his Secret Sushi past.