This product is available during these seasons:
Our wild caught California Premium uni (B Grade) boasts the same ocean-fresh flavor as our California Gold uni (A Grade), but with a softer consistency and milder yellow color. Often compared to custard for its luscious mouth feel, this top-selling item is wonderful on its own and a perfect addition to any sushi experience. Slight variations in color and texture may occur within the same package.
Sea urchins are spiny, bottom feeding echinoderms that are found in every ocean around the world. The California species we process, Strongylocentrotus franciscanus, range from dark blackish purple to red in color and average 1lb each. They are harvested by divers who use hand held rakes and nets. We then process the live urchins by hand within 24 hours to ensure the highest quality uni.
Sea urchins are harvested for their uni. Inside every sea urchin is the prize: bright orange to pale yellow "tongues" of uni. Commonly referred to as roe, these soft golden tongues are actually the urchin's reproductive organs. Uni has long been considered a delicacy in Japan and sushi bars worldwide because of its sweet flavor and succulent texture that melts in your mouth. In some cultures, uni is considered an aphrodisiac!
The exact technique of processing uni is a trade secret that has been perfected by Catalina Offshore Products. In fact, our business started nearly 40 years ago with owner Dave Rudie diving for sea urchins and seaweed. Sushi bars from across the country know that the best uni sushi comes from California, and Catalina Offshore Products. We keep our product in coolers that are maintained at 32 to 35 degrees Fahrenheit until it is packed and shipped daily. We pack in insulated containers with gel-ice for best quality.
All of our uni is categorized by three grades. All taste good and can be eaten raw. The most distinct differences between each grade are in color and texture.
Gold: Brighter yellow/orange, firm texture (A-Grade)
Premium: Milder yellow color, softer pieces (B-Grade)
Vana: Darker yellow color, melting soft (C-Grade)
Note: For maximum enjoyment all fresh uni should be consumed within 4-6 days upon delivery.