Nobu to Sail in Crystal

| Thursday, 21 Feb. 2013

Nobu is one the world's most famous sushi chefs

NOBODY DOES IT BETTER THAN NOBU

Master Chef Onboard Symphony on July 2013 Black Sea Cruise

CruiseMates Culinary Editor

Like Barbara or Brad, Nobu need only go by one name. He's that famous, around the world. The masterful Matsuhisa (Nobu's surname), who spearheads restaurants pretty much everywhere - but only at-sea onboard Crystal Serenity and Symphony - is going to join the latter ship's 12-day Rome-Istanbul Black Sea voyage beginning July 13. Hurry and sign up, because, like Brad or Barbara, this star doesn't make that many appearances and they always sell out.

Sure, he will sign cookbooks and stand smiling next to devoted fans for endless photos. But he is also going to cook. Nobu is preparing two "omakase," or chef's choice dinners in Silk Road, the restaurant with which he is affiliated. These dinners are limited to just 70 guests and will showcase some of the top toque's most famous signature dishes. White sturgeon caviar? Indeed.

He will also teach cooking (demonstration-style), sharing secrets behind his delectable dishes. That's a good thing, now that his miso black cod is craved on most continents. And Nobu will pop into Silk Road and the adjoining Sushi Bar during regular hours, to schmooze with guests. That flash you see won't be the famous green one at sunset, but rather, cameras going crazy for Nobu's friendly grin.

Sake tasting sessions should be another cruise highlight. Nobu is sailing with Fumio Hazu, the sake master behind Nobu's exclusive 140-+-year-old sake brand. During the tastings, Hazu will share insights into "live" sake brewing processes, such as playing Japanese music to bottles for three years "to create a smoother taste from vibrations." Huh? Hey, whatever works. And anyway, don't pregnant women play music for babies in the womb?

Not that Nobu's diehard devotees might care, but this Crystal Symphony cruise dubbed "Bounties of the Black Sea" also visits some interesting ports in Romania, Ukraine and Russia. So not only do you rub shoulders with a celebrity chef, but you also visit ports relatively unspoiled by those mobs of Med summer cruisers. Now that's nearly as good as Nobu's tuna tartare. (crystalcruises.com)

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