Sushi Mambo is definitely not your average Japanese restaurant: The sushi chefs are Latino and the music is vintage R & B.
But this family-owned business, located in a landmark building on First Street at Coombs Plaza in downtown Napa, is a longtime locals' favorite.
Owner/chef Jose Cazares learned Japanese in his apprenticeship with a San Francisco sushi chef, while manager/owner Renee Cazares was a Japanese translator when they met. The two, parents of three children, have been serving sushi, tempura, katsu, sukiyaki and other Japanese fare at Sushi Mambo since 1997.
In addition to winning numerous local and regional awards for cuisine, Sushi Mambo was also chosen as a lunch spot by U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye, who dined there just weeks before his death at 88 last December.
In our video, Sushi Mambo's Heri Miranda prepares a Saba-Dabba-Doo roll (salmon, tuna and mackerel) and an order of ikura (salmon roe) nigiri for Patch.
Miranda has worked for Sushi Mambo for four years, he said. Renee Cazares credits him with inventing the restaurant's Hottie roll, a spicy concoction with panko-fried shrimp in the mix.
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