april 17 2014 008

Gatten Sushi (Revolving sushi belt + FREE DONUTS @ Del Mar Race Track 7/19/14) – Monterey Park, CA

GATTEN SUSHI

This post will be mostly pics of sushi because 1) I’m a bit exhausted from a long week and 2) this sushi place reminds me of my family (who happens to be in town).

AT&T set up new service at my house the other day. Long story short, I spent over 10+ hours on phone with them, prior to install, auditing every detail of the new account before the install date. Come install date, yesterday, the tech(s) were at my house from 1:00p-6:35p. Am I happy with the end results. Not really.

I thought I could work on a few blog posts during the 5+ hours they were there. But, the cable and tv were both inoperable. Sigh…what to do. Not sure how other bloggers choose what they will write about on any given day. For me, lately, it’s the photos of food that are bright and pretty. Go figure.

My mom first introduced me to Gatten Sushi two years ago. She’s not a general fan of conveyor belt sushi restaurants but she liked this particular restaurant. Plus, they give you a reward points card that my mom likes to show off.

Our last visit to a sushi belt conveyor restaurant was in Hualien which I’m kinda missing at the moment (the city & the food).

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SUSHI BAR SEATING AREA

They also have booths that have access to the sushi belt as well.

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Each sushi plate is covered with a plastic top. It’s an easy system here at Gatten. You simply pick whatever plate you want and all the plates, at the end of the meal, will be tallied according to their plate colors.

There are six different plate codes/colors ranging from $1.50-$5.00. You are also able to order hot/cold appetizers from their menu as well.

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 SALMON NIGIRI

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KOBE BEEF TATAKI NIGIRI

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SHRIMP NIGIRI

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WHITE TUNA MISO YAKI

This is the ‘good’ plate because it’s only $2.00 :) I just noticed the sushi chef anime on plate flexing his arm.

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SEARED ALBACORE (?)

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SNAPPER NIGIRI  (?) WITH SALSA

 

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SCALLOP NIGIRI

The ‘BAD’ plate as my mom calls it. The checkered plates are the priciest at $5.00.

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SALMON IKURA
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MACKEREL NIGIRI

 

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SALMON ROE

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CHAWANMUSHI $3.50

You order this from the waitress as it’s not offered on the sushi belt. She then brings out a fresh, piping hot chawanmushi from the kitchen. It’s still brought out on the designated price colored plate.

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CRAB CHAWANMUSHI $3.50

I think this might have been the same price as the regular chawanmushi. And my goodness, it was SO VERY GOOD.

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My grandmothers used to make this for us when we were little. These savory egg flans are one of my favorite things in the entire world. The version here is perfect: smooth and savory; right amount of dashi broth; all the goodies (shitake mushrooms, crab/krab cooked just right.

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SHRIMP UDON

Not a bad portion for $3.50. This is another item you order from kitchen and is brought out to you on designated color plate.

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NIKU UDON

It seems all their udons are priced at $3.50. Sis ordered this and said she liked this beef udon. I thought the broth looked a bit too scummy for my liking.

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PLATES STACKING UP

I always start to organize the finished plates at the meal. I’m always convinced the restaurants will try to ‘pull a fast one’ if you don’t reconcile your meal before they tally.

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VOILA- ORGANIZED & READY TO TALLY – YOU’RE WELCOME

So here’s the deal with eating at this restaurant (or at any sushi conveyor belt restaurant). THINGS (WELL, PLATES) ADD UP QUICKLY. See how there’s only ONE checkered plate in the bunch . Mom has trained me and sis to NOT order many of these plates as they’re really expensive (and I tend to grab the checkered plates off the belt a bit too quickly – sorry mom).

The meal was about $78 (with tax and two hot teas). That’s kind of a pricey lunch for three girls. We didn’t leave hungry but we weren’t stuffed either (should you ever be stuffed after a lunch). I’m pretty sure I could easily make the total over $100 if my mom would let me order whatever the heck I wanted but alas, she’s always tried to teach me restraint :)

Service was alright but mom and sis both said when the restaurant is busy, things weren’t always that great. So this was the first time in months they have returned. When I asked why they both started laughing, referenced that infamous kid cupcake video, and said in Chinese, ‘the San Diego brat is in town’.

Funny. REAL funny.

Gattten Sushi
500 N Atlantic Blvd #125
Monterey Park, CA 91754
626-457-5943

I’m not a fan of watching beautiful horses race at the Del Mar race tracks every year. Well, more so that I’m not a fan of gambling. BUT, I am a fan of the track’s FREE DONUTS , COFFEE, & ORANGE JUICE they offer twice during the racing season.

Sis actually discovered this little ‘secret’ some years ago (before she had her boys). She used to ride horses so the races every year fascinated her. Our ‘nanny’s’ husband would take her to the tracks and let her choose which horses to bet on.

Anyways, she heard about these Free Donut days some time ago and we try to go every year. It’s gotten crowded but it’s still incredibly fun (not just because of the free donuts provided by Yummy). I usually try to sneak to the horse barns and wander the barn in search of a horse I’d like to take home for a pet.

The event is only from 8a-10a. Here’s what it states on their website:

Join us for free coffee, orange juice and yummy donuts, as you take a behind-the-scenes look into the world of Thoroughbred racing. Track announcer Trevor Denman will host the festivities which include question and answer sessions with famous jockeys and trainers while watching the horses during their morning workouts.

July 19 Lineup of guests:

8:15 to 8:45 —  Bugler Les Kepics (celebrating 30 years at Del Mar)

8:45 to 9:15 –  Former Trainer Gary Jones (who will be inducted into racing’s Hall of Fame in August)

9:15 to 9:45 – Apprentice jockey Drayden Van Dyke (leading apprentice on the So Cal circuit)

Donuts Day is held July 19 and August 23 from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. in the Seaside Terrace area at the West end of the Grandstand. Park in the main parking lot off Jimmy Durante. Trams will transport to West end of Grandstand.

Other activities include a meet and greet with the Del Mar Mascot Pony Boy along with face painting, entertainers, and free prizes for the kids. Also, enter to win a Family Fun Pack.

Hope you get a chance to go to this and eat some donuts !

8 thoughts on “Gatten Sushi (Revolving sushi belt + FREE DONUTS @ Del Mar Race Track 7/19/14) – Monterey Park, CA”

  1. Those places were so popular in Sao Paulo but have never seen one in SD! Can’t believe it ended up being so pricy but its so tempting to just grab stuff off the conveyor belt….usually you order and then you wait and then you eat but at these places the instant gratification of just seeing something you like and picking it up and immediately eating the whole thing is the best.

    That kobe beef marbling looks amazing.

    Are you going to the races this weekend? It seems a lot of our friends are visiting SD this weekend so we might end up going to the races Saturday and Sunday. Never knew about the free donut thing we usually just go for the beer fest days. They are very laissez faire about actually taking your tickets when you get a beer, some people in our group had 13 beers last year (with 5 drink tickets haha) O_O

    1. Were they popular in Sao Paulo?! How funny is that. There used to be one in Pacific Beach some years ago but it was pretty bad. It’s a fun concept but honestly, what’s the point. I agree with you that it’s totally instant gratification. Did you ever visit the conveyor belts in San Paulo – how was it – was it pricey as well?

      I bow down to your mastery on the beer fest days. I’m in awe that you guys snagged 13 beers with 5 tickets. I wish you’d do a post on that. I was going to do a post on ‘how I saved change-money in college’ (like on laundry, cable, etc). I usually don’t do the races as I have NO clue how to bet. I didn’t go to the free donut thing this weekend as no one wanted to get up that early and fight for donuts with the crowds. Can’t blame em right.

      Hope you had a great weekend JS!

      1. They were! There was one main chain called Japengo though. They were pretty decent and it didn’t seem that expensive when you saw the prices but like the one you went to at the end it was like huh….that was pricy.

        You know there was no secret to the beerfest thing, the people working it were just super chill! We found like two people that didn’t pull tickets so we just kept going back to get served by them haha.

        That would be a great post! You should look at this website called Money Mustache sometime, its so crazy. It has super intense saving tips. Can’t wait to see your tips!!

        1. I would love to be in a city where there’s conveyor belt sushi on every corner. I don’t know why. There is something fascinating about watching little trays of sushi slowing chugging past you. Actually, I visited one once where, instead of a conveyor belt, it was moving water – like a flowing river. The sushi plates would be placed on these little boats that would float on the water. I’m trying to remember where that was – crap – am I making this up. Maybe it was a sushi dream or something. Crap.

          Thanks for the tip on workin’ the beer fest. Me loves.

          I just tried to find Money Mustache. Is it http://www.mrmoneymustache.com? I think we’d come up with some pretty cool tips between the two of us :)

  2. The horror… A way to end the horror I found on the interwebs:
    “I / My friend have done this to get out of ATT to go to Comcast. Takes a while though. CONSTANTLY call like twice a day saying your tv is not working, just say like static or grey screen, after like 2-4 weeks and countless plp coming out. ( when they come out just reset the box and make it not programmed). Call in saying you want to cancel because the service has been so bad its a nuisance. Took me only 2 weeks. My friend took him about 3 1/2 before they told him fine on cancelling without a Penalty fee.”

    A sushi belt… Sounds like something out of the Jetsons! Think it would make a good video!

    For $78 I’d feast on some roast duck. I like my protein well cooked. :-)

    Thanks for the tips on the donuts! I try not to eat more than 2 a day…

    1. Switching phone/cable/whatever is always the worst isn’t it. Companies have such brilliant ‘bait and switch’ tactics.

      The Jetsons! Great comparison Soo. I don’t recall ever seeing them eating sushi though. That would be funny to see what type of sushi they’d each order.

      $78 for a Roast Duck – that BETTER be a dang good roast duck for that price huh. I’m sure you’d destroy a two course peking duck for $78 – yums.

      Yeah two donuts a day seems about right – anything more than that seems border line gluttony :) Even if you get ‘em for free…

  3. The kobe beef one looks good! And all the soups! And you know, otherwise, probably not for me. Conveyor belt food still sounds so fun to me, though! I just want to watch it all pass by… you should take a video of the conveyor belt next time :)

    1. Oh I bet you would so get a kick out of a conveyor belt place! It’s incredibly fun if you’ve never been to one before. They do have non-raw sushi rolls that I think you’d enjoy.

      I wonder if San Diego currently has ANY of these conveyor belt sushi places.

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