Thursday, February 14, 2008

Anybody for body sushi?

Picking up food with chopsticks is tough enough. Imagine picking that food off a nearly nude model. "I guess that's body sushi, they call it. Instead of using a plate, you use a body," Thom Pham explained. Pham owns Temple Restaurant in downtown Minneapolis; it's the first establishment in the Twin Cities to offer this type of dining experience.

"If you look at it, it's like a beautiful piece of art, it's something different, something unusual," Pham said. The sushi is placed on bamboo or banana leaves which are glued to the models body. Pham says diners have to follow a very direct set of rules. "They have to fully respect the model, they can only use chopsticks to pick up the sushi."

Minneapolis City Licensing agent Ricardo Cervantes says his officers will watch a demonstration of how the dining experience will work before Temple's first scheduled body sushi experience in early March. Provided officials are satisfied with the "safety and sanitary" aspects, the restaurant will debut body sushi in the cities. Cervantes says any "moral issues" that people may have with it would have to be addressed by the city council.

Pham says he's hired 5 female models and 2 male models so far. They're training right now. "They have to be hairless. They have to learn how to breathe evenly so they don't move too much," Pham said. Basically, they have to sit still for an hour and a half while people poke at the food sitting atop their exposed body. "The money is good and they enjoy doing it," Pham added. Patrons will pay 150 dollars a piece for the dining experience, and they'll need at least a party of 6 to book. Pham says so far he's sold at least 8 parties.

There's a news video here.

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