Basho Japanese Restaurant: Our peppy server was a college student whose life and linguistic skills straddled two cultures, a fitting metaphor for a suburban restaurant that offers Japanese menus for both East and West visitors. Basho does the usual suspects quite well, but do ask to see the a la carte menu, which features the more unusual and perhaps challenging dishes (salt-grilled beef tongue or veal liver sashimi or vinegared eel). Order the sushi by the piece and enjoy a wide spectrum of flavors and textures, from roughly textured slices of fatty tuna to sparkling salmon roe preening in their seaweed collars to richly pungent sea urchin. (Lunch weekdays; dinner Monday-Saturday; closed Sunday, 2800 Festival Lane, Dublin. 614-766-7733. bashojapan.com.) Here: A platter of assorted sushi at Basho Japanese Restaurant in Dublin, a suburb of Columbus, Ohio. The selection includes, clockwise from lower left: spicy tuna rolls, salmon skin rolls, fatty tuna or toro, mackerel, shrimp tempura rolls, cooked shrimp, sea urchin, salmon roe wrapped in seaweed. Center: Pickled ginger slices. Bill Daley, Chicago Tribune
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