For my birthday last weekend, my boyfriend took me to Sogo Fusion Lounge in downtown Easton for dinner. Along with Robata's of Tokyo in Allentown, Sogo is one of my favorite places to get sushi in Lehigh Valley. I like their creativity in inventing interesting dishes that mix flavors, textures and sometimes even other types of cuisine.

We took our usual seats at the sushi bar (my favorite place to sit since you can watch the action), greeted the team of five sushi chefs, and began examining the specials board on the counter. He let me do the ordering since I was the guest of honor, but since my eyes are bigger than my stomach, I over-ordered big time!

We started with a Monster, an appetizer of crab meat, avocado, mango, pieces of raw fish and several creamy sauces. The rest of the meal arrived sporadically as the sushi chefs carefully created and plated each roll before handing it across the counter to us.

First, the 2005 Roll arrived - pieces of salmon, tuna, crab meat and tofu wrapped in rice paper and sprinkled with crunchies. Next was a specialty roll called the Green Garden, which was wrapped in avocado slices and drizzled with basil dressing. And finally, a simple avocado roll.

I accompanied my meal with Sogo's signature drink, the Kimono, which is plum wine mixed with champagne.

I was so full, there was no way I was having dessert.

As always, all of the ingredients were fresh, tasty and carefully prepared, and the atmosphere was light, fun and inviting. It was a great way to spend a birthday.