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    Learn how to eat raw fish-Sushi like a pro

    Sushi is a quintessential culinary experience for visitors to Japan, right up there with ramen and udon.
    The most traditional way to enjoy sushi is with an omakase set menu, in which the chef chooses the bites of the day.
    But for some travelers, attempting a set menu can be intimidating because of language and cultural barriers.
    That’s where Sushi University comes in. Launched earlier this year, the experiential classes teach travelers about etiquette and the art of Edomae (Tokyo-style) sushi.
    “I would like people from other countries who think sushi is just slicing fish and putting it on vinegar rice to understand that it is not that simple,” founder Tetsuya Hanada tells CNN Travel.
    “Sushi is delicious even if you don’t know anything about it, but I wanted to get to the bottom of why it is delicious. That’s why I started Sushi University, which explains many things about sushi, history, etiquette and Japanese culture.”
    Part of the Tabimori travel service group — which also provides translation apps, route planners and local dining guide Useful Menu — Sushi University aims to overcome language barriers by providing interpreters and informational resources.
    Each “class” takes place at a sushi restaurant, where a chef will kick off the evening with an introduction about the restaurant’s history, sushi philosophy, the menu and personal techniques.
    Travelers then watch as the chef creates an omakase tasting menu. Along the way, students will learn about fish types and etiquette, and have an opportunity to converse with the chef with help from a translator.
    “A common mistake is taking the topping off the shari (vinegar rice) and eating them separately,” explains Hanada.
    “The balance of the topping, shari, wasabi and soy sauce is considered by the chef when preparing the sushi and it should be eaten in one bite.”
    Other common no-nos include wearing pungent perfume (it interferes with the Edo-style sushi’s delicate flavors), smoking, chatting up the chef while he or she is at work, or letting the sushi sit on your plate too long (Hanada says it should be consumed within 10 seconds).
    Sushi is simply an overarching category that includes several variations. The most familiar worldwide is probably nori maki — or sushi and vegetables, rolled up in rice and seaweed. This covers your ubiquitous California and tuna rolls.
    Then there’s nigiri (slices of fish over rice), sashimi (raw fish slices), chirashi sushi (rice bowls with toppings sprinkled on top), oshizushi (layers of pressed sushi), and Inarizushi(sushi wrapped in fried tofu).
    While sushi has made its way around the world, it wasn’t always so easily accessible.

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