featured guest: paul
When I sat down with Paul, it was very natural. Paul comes in multiple times a week and always sits at the sushi bar. “Sushi bar is the best seat in the house. You get to interact with the chefs and food on a more intimate level. We talk about everything from chef’s knives, to music, hot sauce… whatever!”
Paul officially joined us a ‘regular’ sometime in December 2015, but had eaten at Maru before. Now we see him every week, and sometimes at our East Lansing location, like our recent pairing dinner.
Head Chef Edie sat down with Paul to ask him a few questions about him and his Maru story. Here's what he had to say:
What was your first Maru experience like?
"My first impression was the quality. My second impression was that I was already treated like a regular.”
What keeps you coming back?
“The spirit of things. You can tell the quality in even the simple dishes at Maru that you can get everywhere- like the miso soup and the ginger salad. There is purpose in the quality of the Maru family as a whole.”
What is your favorite thing on the menu?
“The Chef platters, nigiri platters… You get to see the creativity from the chef. It’s always special, especially when the chef takes a quick picture before they hand you your plate. This is how you really know you are getting something good,” Paul said. “I love getting to know the chefs and seeing their creative progression through the food.”
What makes Maru special?
“Thursdays! There is always a new fish or special and it’s exciting. The chefs are happy to try something no one would think of. Every week, I feel like the chefs are growing and I am growing, even as a guest, through the food. It’s just always different. Since I started coming here, my entire family has become part of the experience.”
Do you have any favorite Maru memories?
“Plenty…. all the birthday celebrations, including our daughter’s 10th.” Paul is smiling. His last birthday he made a reservation at Maru and was greeted with a personalized card and a birthday button to wear during dinner. “Getting to receive the last of the former head chefs platter was a treat. Another memory I love is when we reserved the whole sushi bar and everyone got a chef platter. That was really fun.”
Paul also loves being invited behind the scenes. Sometimes he'll stay here toward the end of the night to see how we put things away. He loves to watch us break down fish for the day!
Towards the end of the interview Paul and I starting digressing into conversations about food, youtube videos, NYC site-seeing, and funny stories like we usually do. We appreciate him letting us “probe his brain” about Maru and can’t wait to seat him at the sushi bar sometime next week... Well, we might even see him later tonight.