Kiminobu Saito

Crispy Rice Cakes
Rating: Unrated
Baking cooked sushi rice on a sheet pan transforms it into versatile, crispy rice cakes. Top them with a variety of flavors, like spicy tuna, miso eggplant, and ripe avocado, for a stunning party appetizer.
Spicy Tuna Sushi "Biscotti"
Rating: Unrated
At Sushi Note in Sherman Oaks, California, chef Kiminobu Saito offers wine-friendly bites like sushi biscotti, crispy thin cakes of fried sushi rice with toppings like spicy tuna or miso-basted eggplant, that play well with wines selected by co-owner Dave Gibbs. For pairing with sushi, Gibbs says he thinks about both the texture of the fish—whether it's firm, chewy, or delicate—and any sauces or garnishes. Although sometimes, he doesn't have to think too hard about what to open next: "At the moment," he says, "we're fairly obsessed with just how fantastically well old [2008] Stony Hill Gewürztraminer pairs with everything." We also love this simple avocado topping.