by Tara Davis

Last week marked Fat Sumo Sushi’s tenth anniversary as a business, with three years in Pass Christian.

I have been a big supporter of all they do from my first visit, and was honored to be a part of the festivities by preparing whole roasted pigs for the celebration.

Chef Scott Meinka set out with the intention of having a sushi focused establishment without relying on other food genres to flesh out his menu. What a cornerstone he created in the years that followed.

As I stood there, eating his gumbo and watching people come and go, I was once again reminded of all the reasons I wanted to be here.

Small town life on the Mississippi Gulf Coast is in many ways like small town life everywhere. Everyone knows everyone else, news travels quickly, and a great sense community is ever present.

In some ways, it is unlike almost anywhere – we’ve been through hardships together that reached so far beyond class, race and politics, and helped each other through it. Imperfectly, of course. But we are thriving.

That grapevine through which news and gossip so quickly shoots is also a support system when our neighbors need us and a stronghold when we need to move quickly.

It’s a pathway to our quiet moments and beach days and a front row seat to school and community functions.

As locals, and as business owners, it should always be a matter of priority that we support each other and appreciate the products coming out of and feeding into our towns. Competition doesn’t put more money in our pockets. Giving people a reason to feel good about us and experiences to love, that’s part of the equation that makes Fat Sumo Sushi and so many spots that dot the coast tried and true.

Last weekend, as every day, I was thankful to be in a place where any one of us can show up, be welcome, make a difference and make friends. Maybe gumbo and roasted pigs seem an odd way to celebrate a sushi restaurant’s anniversary, but to me, they are such communal experiences, I can’t imagine better choices.

If you missed out, make up for it by stopping in and eating any and everything Chef Scott offers. Be a part of his next ten years, and every other local business’s livelihood.

Oh? Those pigs? This week, I’ll keep the recipe to myself.

Please let me know should you have questions at (228)224-6781 or