Super Tuna at NYC’s Blue Fin
Once upon a time (actually, February 2008), I remember reading about kindai tuna and thinking that, like a fairy tale, it was too good to be true. On his superlative L20 blog, Chicago chef Laurent Gras shared details of the sustainable bluefin tuna that’s bred from an egg in a college laboratory (at Kinki University in Oshima, Japan, south of Osaka, to be precise). The tuna is then raised with more room to swim than most farmed fish. Gras called it the best of both worlds—farmed and wild. Given the dire predictions from organizations like the World Wildlife Fund (in three years, the Atlantic’s breeding population of bluefin tuna could be wiped out), I’d eat sustainable tuna even if it didn't taste so good. But when I got to try a few slices of kindai at Times Square’s Blue Fin restaurant (thank you GM Tom Piscitello), it was unbelievably tender and fatty. And I wished I could have had more. Apparently, though, only three kindai tuna make it to the United States each week, and only one of them gets to New York City, where elite places like Masa fight over it. How that kindai tuna made it to Times Square I have no idea, but here’s hoping it will keep coming, and we'll all live happily ever after.