Rollin’ Sushi with Sanya
Sushi has rolled its way to the United States in the 1950’s and has flourished in popularity. In its original form, it was prepared with raw fish and vinegared rice. Nowadays you can find sushi made with fried or cooked fish, veggies, sauces and even many vegetarian options. It has expanded to satisfy even the most discriminating palate. Becoming an expert sushi chef is a long journey that can take up to 10 years. In the beginning, much of their time will be spent doing menial work, eventually earning the trust to make the rice, then gaining their apprenticeship as wakiita (which means ‘near the cutting board’). Being a sushi chef, in Japan, is a highly revered and honorable job.
Fortunately, for us we don’t have to go far to try some excellent sushi!! Sanya Sushi Bar is located at milepost 4 in Kitty Hawk. Owner, Leo Zhou, originally from China, opened his restaurant 5 years ago after relocating from Chesapeake, VA. Leo chose to relocate to the Outer Banks because it reminds him of his hometown village in South China which overlooks the Pacific Ocean. Sanya has an enormous variety of sushi rolls, but they also serve Hibachi, Noodles & Fried Rice plus many traditional Chinese specialties, like a local favorite General Tso’s Chicken. The calming atmosphere with the exceptionally kind staff has made Sanya a sort of retreat from the hustle and bustle on the beach. A place to slow down with some good food and rejuvenate.
Their most popular rolls are the Sanya Roll and the Sunflower Roll, as featured in the video. The Sanya has fried oysters and avocado wrapped inside rice and nori, with salmon and spicy crab cake on top. An absolute favorite combining local flavors with traditional sushi flavors. The Sunflower Roll is not only tasty it is visually satisfying as well. Tempura jumbo shrimp, spicy crab, salmon and avocado all wrapped inside sushi rice and a soybean sheet. This is served with a beautiful presentation consisting of flashing neon lights that will make your friends go “ooooooo”, when it’s served to the table.
Sanya is open year around, and in my opinion, serving not only some of the best sushi on the beach but also a relaxing atmosphere and a gracious staff.