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Sushi for Christmas? That’s What “Jiro Dreams of” on PBS

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Jiro Dreams of Sushi


Sushi and Christmas do not traditionally go together, but on the night before Christmas Eve, most who view Jiro Dreams of Sushi on PBS may just get a craving for some raw fish – artfully and safely prepared of course – for the holidays.

The titular character in Jiro Dreams of Sushi is no less than Jiro Ono, the legendary master of knives, the samurai sensei of sushi, (or shokunin, as he is more properly addressed) whose mentoring has let loose upon the world an army of creative chefs who have made a simple fisherman’s meal into highly sought haute cuisine. Filmmaker David Gelb explores the man and his craft, and the simple strokes and elegant touches that have made Jiro the master of turning what some once disdained as “bait” into a culinary art form.

Jiro Dreams of Sushi is part of the Independent Lens series, and will air on most PBS stations on Monday, December 23 at 10 pm ET.

Gelb’s film, like Jiro himself, is full of surprises. Despite his fame, Jiro continues to operate a tiny stall tucked away in the depths of the Tokyo subway system. It has only ten seats, but also three Michelin stars, and getting even a few minutes at his sushi bar requires calling ahead months in advance. As much if not more a teacher than a restaurateur, the meditative mentor is also a philosopher, and one who, as he tells the camera, believes that “sushi is so much more than putting fish on rice.”

Although Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) has not yet scheduled Jiro Dreams of Sushi, it will air on most PBS stations as part of The Independent Lens series at 10 p.m. ET Monday, December 23.

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Mark G. McLaughlin is a Connecticut-based free lance journalist and game designer with over 30 years of experience as a ghost-writer, columnist, historian and game designer. An author whose first published book was Battles of the American Civil War, and whose games include the Mr. Lincoln’s War set, Mark continues to be enthralled by stories from the age of Lincoln. To view Mark's 16th published design, the American Civil War Naval strategy game Rebel Raiders on the High Seas, visit his publisher at
…or his blog at
Mark’s latest work, the science fiction adventure novel Princess Ryan's Star Marines, is available on in both paperback and Kindle e-book formats at
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