Friday, September 21, 2012

Andaz San Diego's Salon Event - The Art of Sake and Sushi featuring Katsuya

Katsuya San Diego
Katsuya, located in the Andaz, San Diego Hotel
Having lived in San Diego for some 15 years, I consider myself fairly comfortable referring hotels and restaurants in the area.  However, every once in a while, a new revelation makes itself known, and so it was with San Diego's Andaz Hotel and the Katsuya restaurant.

Receiving an invitation to the Andaz Hotel's Art of Sake and Sushi event, I immediately sent the email over to my sushi obsessed husband.  Within minutes I had an email back with an exclamation of, "Yes!  Let's go!"  While many of my blog events do not particularly interest him, this one was right up his alley.

Sake Tasting
Arriving in San Diego's famed Gas Lamp Quarter to the Andaz, a Hyatt property, valet attendants quickly opened my car door, and within seconds the car was whisked away to some parking lot that I didn't have to think about.  Boasting some 159 guest rooms and suites, the Andaz describes itself as a "boldly progressive addition to the city's historic quarter".

While I didn't actually check into the hotel, I've read that registration occurs as one is seated in the Andaz Lounge while being treated to a complimentary beverage.  Featuring Respire by Hyatt hypo-allergenic rooms, the hotel website provides the best description:

Respire by Hyatt - Hypo-Allergenic Rooms are designed to provide a comfortable sleeping environment for all guests, especially allergy sufferers. Although all Hyatt rooms follow a strict protocol for cleanliness, Respire by Hyatt hotel rooms in downtown San Diego undergo an additional six-step process to reduce airborne particles and minimize the presence of potential irritants. This process includes installation of a state-of-the-art air purification system and treatment of all fabrics and surfaces in the guestroom. All Respire by Hyatt rooms are installed and maintained on an ongoing basis by PURE Solutions NA. 

Bucket 'O Sake Instagram I sent to make friends envious!
My visit though, revolved around an Andaz Salon Event, one of a series of events featured at the hotel.  Past events have included a wine paring held in the popular Ivy Wine Bar, Art shows, Fashion Shows and for me, the Art of Sake and Sushi featuring pairings by the esteemed Chef de Cuisine, Adam Cho of Katsuya, a restaurant located on the first floor of the hotel.

Treated to a flight of premium Sake tastes, my husband and I came away with different favorites, but with a better understanding of the spirit made from fermented rice.  Sakes from the Western Coast of the US contrasted with sakes made from water hailing from Mt. Fuji, and all came to life with a detailed narrative by the charming, sake expert, Takuya Shimomura.

Moving on to the sushi pairing,
Katsuya Chef de Cuisine, Adam Cho, demonstrated sushi preparation as he filled the group in on the importance of the rice, types of fish, and technique.  As he finished, tables had been set for us to try our own hand that the craft, and laughter filled the room as the guests discovered that making a sushi roll just might not be as easy as it looks.  Luckily, previously prepared sushi samples had also been set out for those of us who were not so successful with our own creations.

Sushi tasting and pairing featuring Katsuya's Chef de Cuisine, Adam Cho
All in all, a very enjoyable event and one that I'm thrilled to have taken part in.  For future Salon Events at the Andaz, keep an eye on the Andaz Facebook page.  Whether you are in San Diego for business or pleasure, or simply a weekend staycation, the Andaz, with its convenient Gas Lamp location, fabulous Ivy Wine Bar and the tempting Katsuya restaurant looks to be the place to be.


  1. What a great event! We are actually going to Japan for spring break, so I am looking forward to trying different sakes and sushi and learning more!

  2. What a great event! We are actually going to Japan for spring break, so I am looking forward to trying different sakes and sushi and learning more!


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