EAT This Week: Yugen Cuisine’s Nigiri Combo

Rob Galloway

To try and decide each week where and what to eat around the basin can be a challenge — there are so many amazing choices. In this feature we’ll dive into dishes that will surely satisfy those hunger pangs and leave you wondering where to go next.

Yugen Cuisine’s Nigiri Combo is this week’s featured EAT dish. <em id="emphasis-5ee5a6376086988667c1504e923611ba">Rob Galloway / Tahoe Daily Tribune</em>

Is there a food more divisive than sushi? It’s really either love or hate. If you’re in the middle, you “like California rolls” so you really don’t count. But if you fall on the love side, then you will absolutely love this week’s feature. Even you California-roll-only-lovers might not be able to turn away.

There’s a lot to unpack with this dish. It’s basically a choose-your-own-adventure served family style. I went with the nine-piece option because when it comes to sushi, more is always better. That said, you can go with raw or cooked nigiri options, but it all starts with the miso soup.

This miso is dashi-based which helps to provide a depth of flavor as deep as the lake itself. You can taste those layers just peeling back with each sip. It’s light, slightly earthy and salty, and everything you’re looking for to warm the belly on a winter day.

For the actual plate of food, I could honestly write a thousand words on how much I enjoyed. I don’t have that kind of space so I’ll highlight a couple of my favorites. Before I do, a rat-a-tat-tat rundown of the others I tried: Escolar (butterfish), Hamachi (yellow tail), Ceviche, Egg Roll and Gyoza. All were fantastic and something I’d have no shame in stealing off someone else’s plate.

The Rooster Salmon includes jalapeno, lemon and spicy crab. The lemon comes across super bright and helps calms down the heat for a combination that feels familiar, yet different and special at the same time.

The Tuna Wrap might have just been my favorite. Tuna wrapped around spicy crab and jalapeno, and topped with small crispy scallops & green onion. The combo of crispy and buttery from the scallop, and the freshness of the tuna and a slight spike of heat make for a pinball of flavors in your mouth.

I, gluttonously, took it down in one bite and wished I had another the moment I was through. Lesson learned. Delicious lessons are the best, aren’t they?

Yugen Cuisine is located at 1132 Ski Run Blvd. in South Lake Tahoe. For menu items, hours and more information visit them online at or by phone at 530-600-1838.

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