A strangely named sushi package grabbed our reporter’s attention, so of course he had to try it.

Sushi is a beloved local specialty in Japan, and it’s likely that few citizens would ever say no to a tasty, fresh meal of raw fish for lunch or dinner. They love that sushi is a dish that is very carefully and painstakingly prepared by specially trained chefs in Japan, which means they also know to temper their expectations somewhat when ordering sushi in other countries.

Our Japanese language reporter, Yuuchiro Wasai, has tried what turned out to be pretty terrible sushi in Cuba, so when he happened to see a display full of sushi in a Spanish supermarket while visiting Barcelona, he was a little skeptical. Spain is known for its tasty seafood…but do they know the proper methods for preparing fresh, raw fish?

His doubts increased when he read the labels on the packages of small sushi rolls:

It’s supposed to be “hoso maki”, not “hosho maki”! Yuuichiro almost laughed out loud when he read it. Spelling it as “hosho maki” is not only wrong, but it sounds like baby talk, since toddlers often say a “sh” sound instead of an “s” sound when they’re learning to speak Japanese.

That caught his attention, though, and he couldn’t seem to let them get away with that funny mistake without checking if the flavor matched the name, so he picked up a plate of “hosho maki” and a package of tuna and salmon nigiri (which was, incidentally, spelled correctly), and carted them off to his hotel to give them a taste. He was pretty sure it would be terrible sushi, and that he would have a funny story to tell later, so, oddly, he was kind of excited to try it.

But to his surprise, both types of sushi weren’t bad at all!

The fish was moderately fresh, and the rolls actually used Japanese rice. He wouldn’t say it was delicious, but it was probably about the same level of tastiness as Japanese supermarket sushi, which is pretty good. However, they were a little bit pricey by Japanese standards, at 12.80 Euro a pack (about 1,700 yen or US$15). In Japan, that price should fetch better quality sushi, but Yuichiro didn’t mind too much.

He was more impressed that the flavor didn’t match the misspelled name. Actually, he later learned, to his chagrin, that the Spanish language doesn’t have a sh” sound, so, barring the spelling, the supermarket essentially had the right naming all along. Plus, other sushi restaurants in Barcelona had “hosho maki” on their menu, too, so the spelling wasn’t even a mistake on the supermarket’s part. In the end, Yuuichiro learned a valuable lesson in culture and language, thanks to a box of sushi!

It’s always fun to find out how a foreign country does your favorite food, since you never know what you’re going to get. You might be disappointed, but on the other hand, you might end up like our other Japanese language reporter, who ordered a hamburger in Morocco and got a funny surprise instead!

Images © SoraNews24
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