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VIDEO taste: Natto again!

Natto spaghetti, natto mandoo, natto cheesecake and more from Nonstop’s latest all-natto feast

Posted February 15, 2013 by Mari Taketa

Yes, it slimed. Yes, it wafted. And yes, it was in every dish. NATTO AGAIN!, Nonstop’s latest foray into the world of the odiferous fermented soybean, featured natto in ways the world likely has never seen, thanks to the mind of chef Grant Kawasaki.

Called upon to come up with Nonstop’s third all-natto feast, Kawasaki studied the dishes at the first two, then set the bar higher. He sourced three kinds of natto from different wholesalers and retailers, says he was super disappointed at not finding his favorite, the fruity, black kuromame natto, but happy to find freeze-dried natto snacks at Marukai.

He sprinkled that on top of of his natto chirashi sushi. He braised short ribs in natto, miso and beer. He combined natto with foie gras for mandoo and with truffle oil for a crudite dip. He let natto melt into a creamy kimchee stew, added more at the end for a pungent punch and then dropped in a chunk of sweet roasted pork belly.

Several people named his buttery ikura-natto spaghetti as their favorite dish of the night. For me it was the amuse bouche (who opens a natto dinner with an amuse bouche?!), a gelee of soft natto beans and vinegary angel-hair mozuku seaweed flecked with lobes of uni and topped with caviar.

And yes, he made natto cheesecake.

Thanks go to Kawasaki, to Dash Gastropub for the venue and flawless service, to Scott Pang and Greg Sekiya of the Facebook natto group, to Kiman Wong and Melissa Chang for their photos, and to all the natto lovers who spent Valentine’s evening in the company of other lip-smacking, chopstick-waving, napkin-wiping lovers of the stinky bean.


You can read all of Mari’s blogs at Follow Mari on Twitter @NonStopMari or email at

  1. Melissa808
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 8:35 am

    My favorite was the chirashi mountain and the gyoza/mandoo.

  2. Posted February 15, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Good thing I didn’t go. Sick today!

  3. nonstopmari
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    @Melissa808 interesting. i liked the gelee, then tie for mandoo and kimchee natto chige w/ udon. others loved the natto pasta.

  4. nonstopmari
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    @Cat maybe the natto wd have warded off ur sickness ;)

  5. Posted February 15, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    Can you plan the next one on a non-Valentine/Holiday day please? 8)

  6. nonstopmari
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    @WorldWideEd u got it — july 10 is natto day, save the date!

  7. nonstopmari
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    @WorldWideEd u got it — july 10 is natto day, save the date!

  8. Melissa808
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    @nonstopmari oh, don’t get me wrong, I really liked the gelee and the natto pasta, too!

  9. jlieu
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    OMG OMG… I am soo sooo jealous! I agree with  @WorldWideEd :D I have it on my calendar! July 10th :D

  10. EurekaGal
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    OOOOOOHHHHHH!!! So THAT’S what I smelled in the southwest wind… :)))

  11. nonstopmari
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    @jlieu  @WorldWideEd see u on natto day :D

  12. nonstopmari
    Posted February 15, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    @EurekaGal u want some natto? i send u some natto

  13. EurekaGal
    Posted February 17, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    @nonstopmari Um, I’m not sure that would be legal. I can get some the next time I’m home, maybe. But THANKS!


About Mari Taketa

Mari Taketa is a dedicated eater who's as opinionated as she is hungry. She covered everything from neighborhood mom-and-pop places to ethnic eateries to fine dining restaurants on Honolulu's dining scene for Metromix Honolulu and The Honolulu Advertiser's TGIF. Before that, she ate her way through Vietnam, Scotland and Japan, where she lived, traveled or worked, after recovering from a journalism career that included stints as editor-in-chief of Hawaii Business magazine and reporter and editor at The Associated Press. Her goals are to always be hungry for more, and to always want to know what's around the next corner.

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