The girl stood crouched over the table, determinedly attempting to tap out a tune with her chopsticks yet, much to her apparent frustration, not having much luck. It was easy to see why. She lacked rhythm. Oh, and she was attempting to play a table ornament. Eventually, the waitress came over and informed her that the three-tier fountain was for decorative purposes only. Disappointed, the erstwhile musician retook her seat and started perusing the menu while I redirected my attention to the first of our dishes: the homemade zaru tofu.

Nothing quite evokes memories of my trips to Japan like the rustic charm of robatayaki, and nothing quite captures the authentic flavors and feel of the Japanese grilling experience like Zakkushi on 4th. The place is tiny, roughly the size of my living room, all wood and bamboo, and always alive with the scents and sounds of the sizzling charcoal grill. If you’re looking for sushi, best go elsewhere. But if you’d like to sample Japanese-style cooking at its simplest, then squeeze into the bar or grab a seat at one of the communal tables and order away. The menu choices range from individual meat and fish skewers to traditional fare like chicken udon, donburi, and that homemade zaru tofu – a sizable portion with a texture akin to firm ricotta, accompanied by green powdered salt, sliced green onions, and an aromatic, wicked little green pepper paste. To be perfectly honest, I’m not a big fan of tofu, yet this dish is one of my favorites. From there, we moved onto the charcoal-grilled skewers that can be ordered sauced or salted: savory and crunchy pork-wrapped garlic shoots, tsukune (minced chicken) topped with sweet soy, subtly smoky ahi tuna, and tender scallops. We also enjoyed some great hatsu (chicken hearts) and paper-thin gyu-tan (beef tongue) which, along with the zaru tofu, proved stand-outs on this night. Feeling adventurous, I tried the whelk – a large marine snail – that proved a little tough and neutral in flavor; probably the only thing on the menu I wouldn’t order again. Fondy also ordered an excellent donburi – the rice dish topped with strips of succulent chicken, tsukemono (Japanese pickles), nori, and a fried egg. We ended our meals with a bowl of complimentary house miso.

Service is relaxed and friendly, the atmosphere festive and conducive to a rollicking, rib-sticking meal over Calpis vodkas. Be warned however. This place is addictive.

By the way, if you’re reading this blog entry, I am speaking to you from beyond the grave!

No. Check that. I’m in Montreal for the Easter holidays. Reports and pics – and more Q&A – to follow.

53 thoughts on “April 5, 2007

  1. Have a great Easter holiday, Joe! My boss gave me tickets to a BBQ lunch tomorrow. Since I don’t eat it, I thought about mailing it to you, but seeing as how your puddle jumper’s in the shop and you couldn’t make it here in time, I gave them to my parents instead.:-)

  2. Hey just wanted to congratulate you and every behind and infront of the camera for the Hugo nod for 200. Good luck. Have a happy and safe Easter trip.

  3. Well, I’ll be awaiting those pics then! Meanwhile, just in case you only check the comments on the previous post for questions…

    1. Besides that snake soup thing, when was the last time you got sick from eating bad food, and how bad was it?

    2. Doing any on-location shoots near Metrotown in the near future?

    3. Since you’re making Atlantis darker with the coming season, do you believe that the previous 3 seasons have not been dark enough?

    Thanks (again)!

  4. Hey Joe,
    As an Infectious Diseases specialist, I gotta tell you. If you eat enough sushi, we will meet professionally someday and I don’t mean me auditioning, that would be particularly scary in and of itself.

  5. This was a comment that was left on your last entry.

    “In the article, she ocmments that you and Paul Mullie sold her on the idea of Carter in command. “

    I suppose that tells us exactly what Carter will be doing, and tells us you have no plans to do anything decent with Elizabeth.

    Why did you guys feel the need to get rid of Torri? And don’t try to tell us that’s not what you’re doing. Most of us can see the writing on the wall. We’ve seen how Ford was in his recurring role…

    You said the information in the Brad Wright interview was accidentally released before it should have been. I’m starting to think that it was done on purpose because you guys wanted to stir some people up for the free publicity it might get you, just like the Carson Beckett stuff has.

    You don’t win fans over by killing off or getting rid of popular characters, Joe. Surely you’ve been a watcher of television long enough to know how attached people get to the characters on their favourite shows.

  6. Are there going to be any Ancients making surprise appearances to help The Atlantis team? By Ancients I mean ones that have taken human form, not Lanteans.

  7. Joe:

    The new sci fi magazine says Carter will actually be in command on Atlantis and there is some other stuff about Mr. Cooper having said it’s time for Sam to step out of the team circle and be in command – well seems that opportunity was ripe in SG-1 and someone blew it. Based on this new commentary and on Carter being in charge of Atlantis will she also be in charge (alone) of SG-1? Seems she worked for it for 8 years, got screwed out of it for seasons 9-10 and had to share co-command with a newbie so will that be corrected in the movies since, as Mr. Cooper says, it’s time for Carter to step out of the team circle and really command? Thanks for an answer.

  8. Enjoy your holiday!

    I rather like tofu, myself. As the daughter of TWO vegans I have had it very many different ways–ranging from delicious to OMG-if-I-even-SEE-that-dish-again-I’ll -DIE! (I, myself, am not even a vegetarian, however.) In all truth, though, it’s amazing what one can do with tofu (both for good and evil, I’m sure). It really is a versatile substance…

  9. Just got my copy of the latest scifi mag. Rob C. Cooper really knows how to piss people off. He basically says that you guys are dumping Weir. He also says something like command of atlantis is “the next evolution for the character” of sam carter. Because sam is so different now than she was at the end of season eight when she was still in command of SG1. If thats the next evolution of the character why did you meaning TPTB put Mitchell in as the supposed leader? Cuz’ he was a guy? I don’t understand the way you are thinking about this, it makes no sense in your story. Why screw over sam in season nine and then screw over weir to make up for it?

  10. When I see the pictures you take, I can’t help but ask myself the question: what’s your favorite type of food? (by ‘type’ I mean: Italian, Japanese, etc…)

    Also: Have you read James Elroy’s The Black Dahlia? It is one of my all time favorite books and if you haven’t read it already then you really should!!

    Happy easter!

  11. what is the best thing about writing for Sheppard.
    Whats the best thing about writing McKays lines.
    Whats the worst thing about writing their lines.

    joshua

  12. Congrats on the nom to you and the rest of the cast and crew! Have you written your acceptance speech yet? 😉

  13. Hi Joe:

    Is it snowing in Montreal? Mind if I snicker a little as you get to enjoy the same weather as the rest of us poor frozen Canucks?

    Speaking of weather, will the Atlantis team ever experience a snow storm or be force to endure serious sub-zero temperatures?

    Have a great Easter.

    Patricia

  14. Answer: Two words – “Row” and “Bot”.

    Do you mean that there was an argument between the scriptwriters concerning the death of McKay?

  15. Hey Joe, please tell us,

    Is the news concerning carter and her own spaceship true ?

  16. Hi,
    I’ve only one question :

    Will we see Jeanie Miller again in “Miller’s Crossing” ?

  17. Hello, Mr. Mallozzi. Just read Robert Cooper words on Scifi Magazine about Sam Carter and Elizabeth Weir… Seriously, You don’t find somehow ironic that to Sam you (TPTB) don’t give the leadership of SG-1 (on her own serie), but nevertheless you give her the leadership of Atlantis, taking Weir place?

  18. Have a great Easter holiday. Montreal huh? How’s your French? 😉

    Your mouthwatering descriptions of your Japanese meal have me sorely tempted to head into town for lunch at Little Tokyo today…

  19. Greetings from sunny Scotland! Have a great Easter Holiday, Joe! A couple of questions for you: You really enjoy fine food, have you ever tried haggis? Where do you draw your inspiration from when writing a script?
    It’s great to see another pug lover, so here’s a picture of my two (Mylo & Sumo) taken at xmas last year. http://img84.imageshack.us/img84/752/dsc00103gw5.jpg

    Regards,

    Graeme

  20. Your in Montreal hows the weather??we are in Kuwait 110 here. we are having spagetti and meatballs (can gouermet)we are in the desert oasis restaurant .( we made it out of bedsheets tent) Hope you and the family have a nice easter.

  21. You are always eating such fancy things! -ha ha- I’m not a big sushi fan (although I’ll try everything once), but I do like tonkastu and umeboshi. I told one of our Japanese guest speakers about liking umeboshi and not minding natto, to which she replied, “Wha?…You are like old person!” I don’t know how long we laughed at that image. But, I guess my tastes are pretty varied in all areas. When I went to go see ‘The Queen’, I was absolutely the only one there under fifty. Twas a shiny sea of grey hair ^^;.

    What is the one Japanese food that you could eat and never get tired of, no matter how many times you ate it in one sitting? I’d have to say mine is mochi ice cream. Mhmmm…-looks at wallet desperately- ;D

  22. Just wondering if you could tell us more about the Teyla story that will be in season 4? i heard a lot of rumours of Teyla going to the dark side? Any bits of info that you can share with us yet?

  23. I hope your Easter holiday is (was?) a great one.

    Looking forward to your return next week.

  24. hi joe,

    i’m curious, why did they change the number of episodes in a season from 22 to 20?
    because i would like another 2 episodes a season to learn more about stargate,the characters and the ir environments, cultures and civilizations.

  25. Hope you are enjoying your Easter weekend.

    I have a little question for you… on DH’s site someone grabbed the idea that ‘Miller’s Crossing’ meant that you were doing another Jeannie Miller episode. I vaguely remember you saying that you didn’t have plans for another ep featuring her this season, but naturally, I can’t find the entry where you say so. Could you please give us a definitive answer on this to quell the rumor?

    I have to add that I’d love to see her again, as her presence seemed to reveal all sorts of interesting things about McKay.

  26. questions about Wraith in season 4

    1) Will be seeing a “baby” wraith ?
    2) Will be seeing a history of love or frienship between two Wraith or between Wraith and humans ?
    3) Will that Condemned Wraith be returning and Steve ressurecting ?

  27. “By the way, if you’re reading this blog entry, I am speaking to you from beyond the grave!”
    What?! *Confused* Montreal isn’t that bad…

  28. Happy Easter!

    And a silly question for you. I’m in that kind of mood today.

    I was a devoted fan of Star Trek Voyager (of all the Trek’s really, but that was my favorite for various reasons) and it always amused me when I’d hear about things that went on with the cast during filming. There were a few terrible practical jokers in their cast that made things interesting.

    So, question. Which cast member is the one to watch out for? Any habitual practical jokers you can give us the low down on?

  29. I’ve only got one thing to say after reading the Scifi magazine

    “So long, and thanks for all the fish.” – from a Weir/Torri fan.

  30. Joe,

    I’m still not happy about the SGA casting situation, but I did want to congratulate you and the SG1 writing staff for the much deserved Hugo nomination. My entire family loved “200”. Good luck!

  31. Congrats to you and the whole cast and crew for the Hugo nomination! It is well deserved. What’s your take on the competition (Galactica’s “Downloaded,” as well as “Army of Ghosts,” “Doomsday,” “Girl in the Fireplace,” and “School Reunion” from Doctor Who)?

  32. It gets better and better every time we hear something “new” about Weir and her being replaced by Carter. Now we know why you kept ignoring all the questions about her. Cooper’s words say it all:

    “i can’t make people feel better who just love torri and dr. weir and want to see her on the show,” sighs cooper. “unfortunately, that’s just not going to happen.

    We, the Torri fans, are absolutely thrilled as you can expect, we have so much hope now.

    And a little bit of poetry for you and the rest of the big decision makers:

    “So long and thanks for all the fish

    So sad it had to come to this…”

  33. I’m with the other posters above. What’s with totally screwing Carter over in season nine with command, but now she’s the best leader ever? All of us–not just some–but all, wanted Carter to lead SG-1. Instead we got the Great White Male Action Hero. Now, instead of getting to lead her own team Carter will be parked behind a desk on Atlantis, twidling her thumbs and fretting worriedly over Shep’s team.

    IT SUCKS!

    Carter should be out there exploring with her team, SG-1. It’s widely assumed that Carter will be promoted upon her arrival at Atlantis. Doesn’t this mean that she’ll lead SG-1 in the future movies? It better, because I’m sick of having bad things happen to Sam. I’m so disappointed she’s going to be a desk jockey it’s not even funny. That’s not her character any more than it was O’neill’s. You guys just keep fraking things up. I wish the shows would just stop.

    Oldfan

  34. Oh well done, Joe. Amanda Tapping sounds so very happy in that Scifi interview. Cripes even she seems to be hedging her dialogue, despite your protestations otherwise. If this isn’t a case of you guys holding her to her contract then I’ll buy you that chocolate you love. But we both know that’ll never happen. Let me ask you this: What are you going to do next year when Tapping’s contract runs out? Or are you banking on Atlantis only going four seasons?

  35. Oh, dear…

    Joe, is IT true? Is Sam really to be in command of Atlantis?? Somehow I thought her role was to be temporary… I realize you know more about what you guys are doing than I do, but might I recommend some caution in involving the characters of SG-1 in Atlantis too much? I loved SG-1 and I love Atlantis, but they’re two different shows and their respective characters are what made them what they are. Please proceed cautiously…

  36. First of all, I love the Sam character always have done, and although i’m sad that TH’s role has become reocurring/relocated to the back burner. But I do understand that decisions are made that we as viewers will never be privvy to. Does it tick me off. Yes, absolutely, a little honesty goes a long way with fans (and I know it’s not always down to you).

    I’m sure there is a reason for all these changes..scary though they are, and hope for our sake and yours, the cast and crew that they’re not the wrong decisions. As I really want SGA to last as long as SG1. I have no problems with Carter coming over to Atlantis, but appreciate people think that AT is taking over TH’s role even though as you’ve said the decision regarding AT was made after the decision for TH. But I really wish that the character of Carter could have been more consistant.

    In SG1 Sam did well as SG1 leader, then it changed and she was shown to be afraid to sit in Landry’s chair in one ep. How then can the writers expect a v.good character to gain respect when she’s been portrayed in such a way in the past? Personally I look forward to the different interactions, and hope you do just a good job with Carter coming over as you seemed to have done with Dr Keller’s character.

    Sorry to have gone off on one. Have a great Easter and enjoy Montreal.

  37. Joe – Let me ask this even though others may have said similar– what exactly is the decision-making process you guys go through for the past 3 seasons regarding Carter in command? From out here it makes so little sense: Carter was groomed for 7 seasons as 2IC to lead SG-1 and she led it in season 8 (she even lead a few times prior to season 8 with Spirits coming to mind quickly)then it was pulled with no plausible or believable explaination and a very lame co-command was put in place on SG-1 with a guy that had NEVER EVEN SEEN the Stargate before, defying all sense of logic and believability. Now Mr. Cooper says additional unbelievable things such as it is time for Carter to move out of the team circle and start really calling the shots and she will command Atlantis. Seems Mr. Cooper has a very short, limited or faulty memory since Carter was out of the team circle and leader of SG-1 for a season (as well as in charge of Area 51 for some length of time unknown to the audience since it seems to have been nothing more than a throw-away line to cover-up a huge hole in Season 9) only to have her command of SG-1 and Area 51 illogically disappear. What exactly goes into the decisions like this, if anything, and what goes into the logic, if any, behind trying to explain them (which right now is not working as evidenced by the incredulity with which Mr.Cooper’s recent statements about Carter’s command role are taken).

    Thanks much.

    Sue Durkin

  38. Hi, Joe!

    I just read about the article in the Sci-Fi magazine, and that’s wonderful news-about Sam. I like Elizabeth and it is sad I’ll have to say ‘goodbye’ to her, but I hope we’ll be seeing some of her again. Anyway, I’ve loved the first 3 seasons of SGA, but the news about Sam only makes season 4 even more exciting, for me at least.

    And I hope you have good time during the Easter holiday, and I am looking forward the report and the pictures.

  39. Note to self: Never read your blog when I’m hungry :p Wishing you and your family a Happy Easter Joe. And congrats on the Hugo nomination!

  40. Hi Joe, it’s only me again. Sorry to be a pain, but, I was reading some info regarding Reunion and it got me thinking about the episode ‘Runner’ in S2. It suggested that Ronon may not be able to be fed on by Wraith is this correct? Or was there a reason why the Wraith stopped trying to feed on Ronon?

    Thanks

  41. Hey Joe…

    Wading through all the comments about the new SciFi magazine article (good luck with those LOL), I have a completely unrelated question for you…

    Can either you or the Magic 8 Ball (which I’ve since learned is actually Damian Kindler’s) tell us whether or not we’ll get more Woolsey this next year? I really love Robert Picardo and he does a fantastic job in the role.

    Thank you and have a happy and blessed Easter,
    Mary Beth 🙂

  42. Hi Joe:

    Another Elizabeth fan here. I love Atlantis on many different levels, but for me, she is the glue that holds it all together. The news today that it appears she will barely be in the show during season 4 makes me sad. Although I will continue to watch the show, my heart won’t be in it. So my question for you is this – should we quit fighting for this character that we love so much or keep up the good fight?

    Thanks for your time.

    Roxanne

  43. Happy Easter to you and your family and congratulations to you and to everyone for the Hugo nomination for 200 (loved that episode!!!!)

  44. Don’t let these nay-sayers ruin your Easter Joe! There are plenty of us who watch Atlantis who are excited about Carter coming to command and Weir being phased out.

    You and the others in charge are doing a great job!

  45. Does Carter really have a such a huge fan base that the producers feel it necessary to bring her over to Atlantis? If so, would it not be possible to create a role for her on Atlantis WITHOUT replacing Weir? After all, there was a lack of female characters in the main cast in seasons 1-3.

    Was there something that you felt was wrong with either the character of Dr. Weir or Torri Higginson’s acting to necessitate this rather radical change?

    Speaking for myself, I’ll probably keep watching as long as the Sheppard – McKay dynamic (the backbone of the show) remains intact, and is not affected by the arrival of Carter. But I would really like to know what is the reasoning behind removing one character and replacing him/her with another?

    SG1 and SGA are separate shows, with different fan bases, and I can’t help but feel that SGA fans get shortchanged with all the cast changes in the 4th season.

  46. Hi Joe,

    Just wanted to wish you and your family a Blessed Easter and safe travels. Congrats to you guys for the Hugo nomination.

    While I agree Monday nights game was not the best as far as a good close game. As a Big Florida fan I was pleased – especially since I won the office pool – even got the point spread bonus 🙂

  47. I’m pretty sure that the SGA promo I saw tonight on SciFi had Sheppard’s name spelled wrong. It was a short one where he was apologizing for shooting everyone and I believe it was captioned “Shepherd on the team”.

  48. As I am a Torri fan, which equals to me being a nay-sayer for wanting her to stay by default, I would like to say that as much as your trying your hardest to appease your SG-1 fans and yourself by FINALLY giving Carter leadership of something, it seems that you’ve pissed off sam fans by confining her to a desk. Not to mention that poor Elizabeth gets shafted cause, god forbid, you couldn’t possibly have two co-leaders in Atlantis.

    Ace job guys! you’ve really outdone yourselves this time.

    thanks for all the fish! and don’t even DREAM of me giving a damn about the new series and the telemovies. My thoughts and feelings about Elizabeth means nothing to you people, so don’t expect to come running back for some more pain.

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