One of my most recent memorable meals was at Haruno Japanese Sushi Bar & Grill, in Springfield, Missouri. After a second straight weekend of busy performance schedules and lackluster festival food, our group treated ourselves to a night out!! This upscale modern-Japanese restaurant, with its posh interior, low lighting, and comfortable couch seating, was fancier than any restaurant I’ve ever frequented. I was instantly overwhelmed and nervous by the extensive drink, sushi, and dinner menus. Rather than tie myself down to one dish, I opted for a bento box, which included a variety of items. I was not disappointed with my decision! The meal began with a simple garden salad, a bowl of earthy miso soup with seaweed and tofu, and some salted, steamed edamame. When the waiter delivered the decorative bento box, I was in shock at how much food it actually contained! Perfectly cooked sticky white rice. Flaky salmon teriyaki resting atop a bed of crisp shredded cabbage. Light as air tempura shrimp, lotus root, sweet potato, and asparagus. Crunchy fried spring rolls. Delicate California rolls. A perfect sampler of Japanese foods. Despite stuffing myself with these delicacies, I still managed to find room in my stomach for dessert – a bowl of simple, mildly sweet, green tea ice cream topped with tart fresh raspberries. To top it all off, I had the pleasure of dining surrounded by this group of individuals who, over the past year, have become my taiko family, engaged in lively conversation.
USC Geisha Dream Collection Mini [retired]