Jack’s 99 Cent Store to Duane Reade: Our Sushi is Cheaper Than Your Sushi!


Dear God,

Hello, it’s me Mamacita. I know I haven’t been the best lamb in your flock these past few years. In fact, I think I ate some of the flock over rice with white sauce recently. Nevertheless, I ask you now to stand beside me and guide me through this fishy situation. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no fish; for thy stomach pump and Immodium A-D are with me.

Last week everybody was talking Duane Reade sushi.  But that is child’s play when compared to this challenge. Yes, I am facing this thing we humans call Jack’s $1.99 sushi rolls. People can talk all they want about it, but it is time someone put their roll where their mouth is. How can such an abomination exist and at such a low price? Such dubious consumables are not meant for this world. I can’t answer such an existential question, I can only follow my destiny: to be the cheap and hungry girl that eats the stuff no sane person would touch. So be it. I’m sailing the ship called Jack’s 99 Cent Store and it’s a one-way ticket to the porcelain gods. So here I go.

frozen fish

When I entered Jack’s refrigerated aisle I noticed a couple things. First was the mind-boggling sight of 20 pounds of frozen fish fillets. You can buy a fillet to take home to cook for only $1.29. That’s about the price of a pack of Twinkies. As I came to the sushi section I saw an older Asian woman picking up container after container, eying them up, then putting them back unimpressed. Well that instills confidence.

sushi 2

Once again, I went all out and got the spicy tuna roll and also the salmon/avocado roll. Really, Midtown Lunch needs to get a health plan. I’m just saying, Lord knows what bacteria I was about to ingest. Two containers of raw discount store sushi came to a grand total of $3.98. A bargain basement deal! I took it back to my secret ML lair and unlike last weeks sushi challenge, there was no use bringing the cat litmus test into this. If he turned his nose up at $9 sushi there’s no way he’ll try the 2 buck up-chuck. Plus there is only room for one Evil Knievel in this household. So it was with pounding heart and trembling chopsticks I dug in.


The avocado in the salmon roll was tainted with little brown specks, denoting an over ripe/going bad fruit. I was surprised that the salmon all in all didn’t look too shabby, but the rice was dry and so was the seaweed wrapper. This was also true of the spicy roll.


There wasn’t really very much tuna in the roll, what was there didn’t look fresh and pink. I ate it anyways. Hell, might as well go out with a bang. The one oddly positive point was that unlike the Duane Reade sushi these rolls had black and golden sesame seeds.

If I were Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto I’d give the Jack’s sushi a minus 5.

So take my advice, don’t try this at home –or anywhere really.

Jack’s 99 Cent Store, 110 West 32nd Street (btw. 6+7th), 212-268-9962‎


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