Uni has a deep, buttery flavor packed with umami, and a luscious texture that melts on the palate. These sensations pair with a brisk, invigorating fragrance of the ocean, leading many to describe eating uni as experiencing the very essence of the sea. Bafun Uni comes from petite green sea urchins with small, vibrantly yellow and orange roe referred to as “tongues.” Sourced from the world’s most venerated and prolific uni producing region of Hokkaido, Japan, this uni is available in three exquisite presentations.
Narabi trays are the most popular presentation, with tongues arranged in parallel, showcasing their color and structure as transparently as possible. In most circumstances, only the three highest grades of uni are suited to this manner of presentation, as its lack of complexity renders any imperfections conspicuous.
Bara trays have a more elaborate, ornamental appearance, with tongues criss-crossed over one another to form an impressive visual that also obscures small aesthetic imperfections on any of the individual tongues. High quality uni with superficial shortcomings will typically be presented on these trays.
For both Narabi and Bara trays, “special” is the highest quality designation, with quality descending from Toku Jou to Jou to Bara Jou, though all of these distinctions represent the highest broad category of uni produced in Japan.
Ensui Uni contains tongues packed in liquid, mitigating the inevitable risks of transporting the uni. The brine is a mixture of salt water and alum, a naturally occurring element that lightly preserves uni’s structural integrity once harvested. Although a small amount is utilized in all uni production to effectively prevent the tongues from melting, too much alum or too much time in contact with it can cause the tongues to develop bitterness, so we do recommend consuming the uni as freshly as possible.