Spicy Tuna Sushi "Biscotti"

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.

Spicy Tuna Sushi Biscotti
Photo: Victor Protasio
Total Time:
25 mins


  • 7 ounce sushi-grade fresh tuna, cut into small cubes (about 1 cup)

  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced scallions

  • 2 tablespoons masago (orange, salt-cured smelt roe) (such as Sushikko)

  • 2 tablespoons Kewpie mayonnaise

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ponzu

  • 3/4 teaspoon la-yu (Japanese chile oil)

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 20 Crispy Rice Cakes

  • 1 serrano chile, seeded and thinly sliced


  1. Stir together tuna, scallions, masago, mayonnaise, ponzu, la-yu, and salt in a medium bowl. Top each Crispy Rice Cake with about 1 teaspoon tuna mixture and 2 to 3 serrano slices, and serve immediately.

Suggested Pairing

Pair with a 2016 Ovum Base Line Riesling or 2017 Stony Hill Gewürztraminer.

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