The traditional method for preparing sushi requires slices of raw fish to be held over unlit fires in order to secure that signature uncooked flavor. Explore such innovative foodsmithing with today’s Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of sushi at Geisha Sushi in Capitola.
Partnering with FishWise to promote the health and stability of ocean ecosystems, Geisha Sushi sources all its ingredients from stable fishing grounds and reputable farms to craft some of the freshest signature rolls and sashimi. The menu’s selections change according to daily, weekly, and seasonal availability with an extensive vegan selection. For the nigiri-style o-nagi ($6), seared U.S.–farm-raised catfish stands in as a sustainable alternative to unagi eel. The Coco-Loco ($11.50) combines spicy albacore, pineapple and cream cheese in a tempura-battered roll, then tops it with teriyaki sauce and toasted coconut, and the Spice House ($8.50) blends deep-fried Japanese eggplant, yam, and baked tofu, all topped with yellow curry and then broiled. Dressed in traditional kimonos, Geisha’s staff also steeps organic, fair-trade Chinese and Japanese teas ($3.50/pot) to share among the table, and pours drams of house sake ($4–6/bottle) to toast to the victor of chopstick fencing.
The net of Geisha Sushi's culinary concerns stretches far beyond the fish on its plates. Its first priority is sustainable seafood—fish caught or farm raised with systems that don't harm the surrounding ecology. The kitchen partners with the nonprofit FishWise to help find environmentally conscious examples of oceanic fare, many of which hail from local waters, such as Monterey Bay. The sushi menu thus contains alternatives to diminished sushi sources. For example, the o-nagi nigiri replaces unagi (eel) with seared namazu, a farm-raised catfish. The selections listed on the specials board change seasonally, weekly, and daily as natural conditions shift, but their origins, catch methods, and high-school GPAs are always displayed for guests' perusal.
The staffers’ conscientious culinary commitments extend to their catalog of organic, fair-trade teas, which arrive at tables by the pot in the hands of kimono-wearing servers. In addition to marine morsels, vegan and vegetarian rolls wrap up ingredients such as crushed pineapple, coconut, and baked tofu. Spherical lanterns illuminate the entrees on each table as well as the decorative, blossoming tree that draws eyes toward a backdrop of arched windows.