Friday, March 09, 2007

Sentimental Saves

Have you ever had such a sentimental association with a restaurant that you wind up "saving" it and not returning, or alternatively, returning often to relive the memory? Minato Sushi (992 West Broadway, 604-732-6554), a little sushi joint in the mini mall at Broadway and Oak, is one of the former type for me. I had my very first official date ever in that restaurant, eons ago, while I was still in university. The boy I went with quickly became my first love, and it was everything I could have wanted from a first relationship. Let's call him Breadboy, since he was the one who taught me to bake bread, and in fact was the first person to ever teach me to cook. How funny it is to remember myself so timid in the kitchen. Cooking is really (as so many things in life are) all about just deciding to have the confidence that you can do it. Not being one to follow "the rules" of dating, or at that point in my life, to even be aware of them, I remember I wasn't shy with the ordering. I didn't hide my hunger, nor did I really comprehend that he would be so insistant in paying for the whole meal. Back then, sushi was still a big treat, even the mediocre stuff, and we both loved it. Yay! Something in common for the nervous young would-be couple. So we ordered. And ordered. I have this memory of boat-load after boat-load of sushi coming at us, and us both gorging ourselves happily, while getting more and more comfortable with each other. We're talking a fricken' fleet here, and all-you-can-eat sushi hadn't really descended upon the city yet. Anyhow, Minato still stands, and for me, it's like a little monument that holds that beautiful memory of that first date. I never went in again after that first date. I moved away, and I moved back, and I often smiled fondly when passing the restaurant, but I would never go back. It wasn't really a purposeful thing. Often, if I was looking for a restaurant in the area, I would be with another boyfriend, and always felt that I would wind up being too sentimental going back there, and figured that wouldn't be terribly considerate to whomever I was dating at the time. I mean, how boring would it be to have dinner with someone mooning over their first date at that restaurant. That's what blogs are for, hee, hee! Well, on the spur of the moment recently, I went to Minato's, alone, for a quick bite on my way from one place to another. It's just the same all these years later. It's good and reliable, and relatively cheap. And I know it's just a sushi joint. But it's made it through all these years in this town full of sushi joints. And I'm glad.


Your cuz said...

Ah, Minato. For me it's the nabeyaki udon, and the one place by which I judge all other nabeyaki udons. And yes, I remember the friend who first introduced me to the place on a foray back into town after an extended absence. And it's a standby. Thanks for the post about the place.
~your cuz

too_much_thinking said...

(Such an intensely personal and delicious post!) If there is a restaurant that I'm saving, it's probably CinCin. Sorry - I don't have as good of a story to tell, but it's a pretty special place for me. There are other places that I'm not really saving, but also evoke sentimental memories.

Dumpling_Girl said...

Thanks cuz and too_much_thinking, for reading, and for sharing!