Oenonta, NY is a tiny college town located in Upstate, NY. As such, there is a plethora of different foods and restaurants on Main Street and the surrounding areas. Of these restaurants, a sizable percentage have Sashimi listed on their menu.

But how good can it be with so little competition?

Despite how small the town is, the sushi quality is not too bad. While larger cities such as NYC, Chicago, Ann Arbor, San Francisco, and LA have sushi restaurants with more variety, the quality of rolls and fish are comparable. Of course, as with any city, the quality depends on the restaurant.

Being an avid sushi lover and sashimi eater, I took upon the not-so-daunting challenge of trying every sushi restaurant in town. As I am new to the area, I had to ask a number of my coworkers for recommendations of places to try out.

The first place I tried was Tiger Asian Cuisine. While the ingredient ratios in their rolls were not the most harmonious, their fish was pretty fresh, and they gave the most "stuffed" rolls for the price of any sushi restaurant I visited. Next up was Tokyo Tavern Japanese Cuisine. Their fish quality was a little below that of Tiger Asian's, and they were a little more stingy with their ingredients- particularly the fish. However, their rolls were a little more balanced in terms of the harmony of the ingredients.

Meanwhile, Asian Temptation Modern Asian Cuisine was stingy- but only with their fish. This caused harmony of some of the rolls to be a little off. Lastly, I tried sushi from China 19. Of all the sushi places I had tried so far, this was my least favorite. While their ingredient quantity and roll harmony were comparable to the other restaurants, their fish quality was not as good.

Additionally, they had less variety- but what did I expect? After all, they weren't specialized in sushi or seafood.

Unfortunately, after trying so many restaurants, I could not help feeling disappointed. Growing up in Brooklyn, NYC had spoiled me when it came to sushi variety and fish quality. As much as I love rolls when getting sushi, my favorite part of the experience is still the raw fish.

As such, I tend to order a large helping of sashimi with whatever rolls I end up getting when I go out. However, the bang for my buck when it came to sashimi in town wasn't anywhere near what I had been brought up to believe was the norm.

It turned out the best place was not at a restaurant

Could I have forgotten to try a restaurant? Is this what small towns are like? Is it because this isn't a port city? These were the thoughts that raced through my mind as I tried one restaurant after another, unable to satiate my thirst for good quality sashimi. I ignored my inner introvert at work, striking up one conversation after another with various coworkers in my desperate attempts to satisfy my desires without making the drive out to surrounding bigger cities such as Albany, Utica, and Binghamton.

Finally, someone suggested I go to Captn Cook's Seafood Market to buy my own sashimi grade fish and just cut my own sashimi. There was just one small problem though- I had no idea how to prep, skin, or cut fish. Still, I ventured out, determined to find good fish.

Upon entering the store and conversing with the worker[s], I quickly learned that fish there were freshly sourced and never more than a few days old. Additionally, they were willing to do all the prep work including cutting and plating for a small fee. As I sat in the store eating the fish, I could not help thinking that it was undoubtedly the best fish I had ever had, both within and outside of the tiny town. For just $10, I was able to eat about half a pound of sashimi- a quantity that would have cost at least twice that amount in most sushi restaurants.

So for those of you struggling to find good quality sashimi: my advice is to try and see if your local fish market sells sashimi grade fish and will prep it for you.

It seems that [for me] desperation paid off.