Tag Archives: Sushi

For that traditional Hibachi experience, check out Hana Tokyo in Fairfield, CT

2 Mar

Hibachi Onion Tower Hana Tokyo

We have to admit, we don’t get out for Hibachi very often. Ok, very often is an understatement . . .  we’ve actually only ever been once before in our entire lives, just a few years ago. Sure, it can be kitschy, but with the right group of people and a fun, talented Hibachi chef, a little kitsch can be a whole lotta fun! I mean where else can you see a knife and fire show, get food thrown at you, and have alcohol poured directly in your mouth without getting kicked out? And while you’re not going to get a fancy gourmet meal served in tiny portions on exquisite plates, you sure can get yourself some tasty, traditional Asian favorites that fill your belly for hours to come! So it was for these reasons we were excited to take Hana Tokyo up on their offer to enjoy their Hibachi experience with a couple of friends of ours.

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Celebrate Hibachi Style with Westport Little League @ Sakura of Westport

5 Sep

If you’re looking to have a fun night out with friends and family, checking out a hibachi restaurant is a smart choice. There are onion volcanoes, fun conversations, knives flying everywhere, lots of food flipped into the air and into mouths, and lots of sake flying to and fro. And, it’s with that exciting atmosphere that Sakura in Westport presents a special hibachi dinner (price and menu are the same) for the Westport Little League team. The special meal is happening 9/9, starting at 5:30. So, not only will you get to have some great food, but you’ll also get to meet the team and coaches and congratulate them one more time.

How well do you think the boys will be able to catch the food in their mouths? We’re gonna guess they’ll be flawless. Maybe the Hibachi Master Chefs will let the boys pitch in some shrimp, too? The only question is will it be a fast-shrimp, curve-shrimp, or slider-shrimp…

Sakura

Address: 680 Post Road East

Westport, CT

Phone: 203-222-0802

Local Restaurant Creates Dish in Honor of Westport Little League

27 Aug

The Westport Little League Roll, from Matsu Sushi’s FB page

Before we lived in Black Rock, we lived on the Saugatuck River in Westport.  And, at that time, we were seriously obsessed with sushi.  Not that we aren’t still in love with the good stuff, but we’ve toned it down a bit.  Seriously, we were eating sushi at least twice a week.  And, most of the time that we had sushi, we’d order it from Matsu Sushi in Westport.  Not only is the restaurant awesome inside, but we always had great rolls and a great time there.

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Bambou Asian Tapas + Bar: Not Your Typical Sushi Spot – Greenwich, CT

13 Mar

A few years ago, before we started our blog, we tried Bambou Asian Tapas & Bar in Greenwich and really enjoyed it. Now only minutes away from where we live, we decided to head back and see if things were as good as we remember.

Just looking at the menu, we were excited because of the variety of flavors and choices. The decor, too, is pretty simple and zen…relaxing. So, let’s take you through our meal and show you why Bambou just might be your next stop for unique tapas and creative sushi.

Basket of various fried sweet potatoes

Basket of various fried sweet potatoes

Sweet Potato Tempura Fries with Honey Soy Dip

Awesome plating with a fry basket displaying the fries.  While the outside was crispy, the insides were raw and needed more cooking.  The dip added some sweetness and there was a slight tartness from the soy.  The darker fries were thicker and had a deeper kind of flavor. We probably wouldn’t get this again.

Perfect little dumplings

Perfect little dumplings

Veggie Dumplings

We got ours steamed, though you can get them fried if you’d like.  One of the things that we hate most about dumplings is how some Asian restaurants use a super thick, flour-y wrapper on the dumpling so all you taste is starch.  Well, they’ve got it down here at Bambou because they use nice, thin rice paper…just like they should.  Inside the dumpling were big chunks of veggies and the soy vinegar sauce for dipping was a bit tangy. Very good!

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Sake to Me, Westport: Pink Sumo Sushi & Sake Cafe Rolls into Town

20 Nov

Sick! Love that sign! From Pink Sumo’s Tumblr.

Westport’s quite the dining destination, now isn’t it?  Whatever you’re in the mood for, too, they’ve got the means to feed your need.  You want a burger on a barge?  Check out Black Duck.  You want some ribs to nom on?  Check out Bobby Q’s.  In the need for some seafood served up with a creative flare?  Crack open the doors of The Whelk.  Feel like some great farm-to-table?  Pick Terrain, LeFarm, or The Dressing Room.  Well, you get the idea.  If you don’t get the idea, sorry, we can’t be much more repetitive just for your sake…or is that sake, the drink?  We have to move on.  Seriously, we need to.

So, let’s add another reason to hit up Westport for some cravings:  sushi.  Yes, there’s a new bad girl in town and her name is Punk Sumo Sushi & Sake Cafe.  Well, we guess she’s a girl.  Guys can like pink too, yes, we shouldn’t judge.  We’ve very excited for the opening, slated for 11/26/12 at 11 am.  They’ll be rolling, slicing, and dicing food, and also pouring out sake at 4 Church Lane, right across the street from the YMCA and next to Urban Outfitters (boyfriends and husbands, be prepared for a pre or post shopping trip).

Now, here are some reasons why we’re ready to try out Punk Sumo Sushi & Sake Cafe:

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Ocean to Table Sushi that Is Seriously out of this World! Miya’s Sushi – New Haven, CT

12 Nov

Our fascination with Miya’s Sushi and Chef Bun Lai began when we had our first bites of their sushi at The Whole Hog fundraiser for Wholesome Wave.  Bun’s uniquely awesome personality really came through when he talked to us about harvesting his own seaweed and how everything in the sushi roll was made.  We could tell that he had a deep passion for food and keeping things local, which is exactly what made us want to travel into New Haven to check out Miya’s.

It was finally when we were contacted about Bun Lai and Miya’s Sushi being on a new TV show that we got our butts in gear and headed out to New Haven. Plus, it was the perfect place to celebrate Dan’s birthday! We know that New Haven can seem so far away, especially when you’re in the western part of CT, but it’s really worth the trip!

As we sat down, we learned from our waitress about some basics of Miya’s.  First off, she told us that the staff are trained divers and they were going on a diving trip the following day to get seafood for their rolls and dishes.  The DIY philosophy also comes through when they served us their homemade low sodium soy sauce and their homemade ginger that is just de-vine.

Our strategy was to order lots and lots of rolls so that we could try as many flavors and combinations as possible.  This worked out well because most rolls were sliced into four slices, not an overwhelming amount at all.  We also HAD to order a few drinks because they were so incredibly unique. And, despite all the food and drinks that we ordered, we still ended up spending a bit less than we would at other “comparable” sushi joints.  We say comparable because, well, it’s hard to compare anything to Miya’s anymore after eating there.  Dan felt very zen, so he allowed his poetic side to reign and compose haikus (5-7-5 syllables) for each roll.

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LaRocca’s Country Market Expands and Reopens – Stamford, CT

30 Jun

The finishing touches…from LaRocca’s Country Market

Back in 1925, Giovanni’s Country Market on Old Long Ridge Road began its long run as a go to destination for North Stamfordites.  They’d stop in for fresh produce, meat, seafood, and hard to find gourmet items.  Turns out, they’ve been working hard on updates, remodeling, and, well…changing their name.  You probably guessed the  name:  LaRocca’s Country Market.

Expect to see a gourmet deli, organic produce, sushi, freshly made pasta, freshly caught wild fish, and everything else you’d look for at a grocery store.  In addition, you’ll be able to find lots of prepared foods to go.  Catch them today, June 30, and they will have samples of free food so you can try out all that LaRocca’s Country Market has to offer.  They are also saying that there will be a surprise guest.  Hmmm…Santa? :)

As a special for the opening, you can get 20% off your purchase.  You should sign up for their e-mail list by visiting their site to get more deals and coupons like this.  Plus, check out their weekly deals and specials.  Just because we love you, we’ve included both in this post.
LaRocca’s Country Market
105 Old Long Ridge Rd
Stamford, CT 06903-1600
203-322-2202

Monday through Friday: 7:00am-7:00pm
Saturday and Sunday: 7:00am-6:00pm

Enough Sushi for a Whale at Sushi X II – Stamford, CT

8 May

So, two Italians walk into a Japanese restaurant on St. Patrick’s Day.  Oh, it’s no joke.  See, when the urge for sushi hits you, it’s nearly impossible to shake it even if it was St. Patty’s Day.  Yeah, we should’ve been eating corn beef and cabbage and throwing back some beers.

We wanted to try a new sushi spot, so Danny threw out the idea of Sushi X II:  a sushi lover’s paradise that is all you can om nom for $19.99 or $21.95 on weekends.  Immediately, I resisted.  Sushi…all you can eat?  Um, yeah, I wasn’t convinced it would be any good. But, I felt daring and adventurous so I agreed. After all, we had to be lucky, it was St. Patty’s Day.

How it Works

You can order all you can eat sushi from their paper menus or you can even order a la carte (or 品料理 in Japanese – yeah, we can copy and paste from Google translator, what?) off the kitchen menu.  If you’re lame, you order a la carte.  If you’re awesome, you order all you can eat:

1) There are two paper menus that you can order from.  Start by writing the number of each appetizer that you would like.  For example, if you want two crab wontons, write “2.”   Give  your choices to your server.

2) Pick up the sushi menu and circle your order of sushi, sashimi, rolls, and speciality rolls.  Give that bad boy in to the server.

Space it out however you’d like, but don’t take more than you can eat.  First of all, it’s a waste, but second of all, they’ll charge you for whatever you have left on your plate at the end.  We actually like that they do that so we were sure to finish everything on our plates.  Aw, our moms are so proud of us!

The Food

They’ve got salad, sushi appetizers, more appetizers, fried goodness, soup, and teriyaki dishes.  We went with some spring rolls, shumai, crab wontons, bbq ribs, and bbq squid.  The crab wontons were cream cheese-erific, had bits of crab, were not too crispy–a nice start to the meal.  The shumai was also great, but the same can’t be said about the bbq squid.  The flavors from the sauce were too overpowering and it came out tough and hard to chew.  The bbq ribs were similar, kind of tough and dry.  They were the kind of ribs that you needed to literally tear apart, not fall off the bone with a light tug like they should be.  So, half of the apps were good, half weren’t.  But, you go to a sushi palace to get sushi, not just apps, right?

Now, the sushi.  The fish here tasted fresh, smelled fresh and looked good too.  If you just want to try some fish, order some sashimi to get some slabs of yumminess.  If you want a bit more, you can order from the sushi portion of the menu.  If you like more of a flavor and texture mixture, stick with the rolls and specialty rolls.  We had some white tuna and red snapper sashimi and a peanut avocado roll because we were feeling HUNgry. All the rolls were actually pretty decent, but our favorite was the Winter Roll.  It had mango, cucumber, and avocado, topped with spicy crabmeat, crunch, and mango sauce.  The contrast of flavors and textures is what made this roll so great.  As for which rolls you should pick, that’s a personal matter that we need not pry into.  I, for example, will not have any eel or eel sauce because the texture freaks me out.  But, you, ya weirdos, might like it. hehe I kid.

Wrapping Up

If you’ve got a serious hankering for whale-portioned amounts of sushi, this is the spot to hit up.  You’ll pay one flat rate, pick out your apps and pick out how you’d like your sushi.  Granted, some of the appetizers can be avoided, but some of them are good.  You’d be wise to try a great variety of sushi and rolls rather than some of the apps.  Yes, this isn’t going to be the most amazing sushi that you’ve had (it’s no Fin for example) but for the price and the portions it’s actually decent. Shockingly.

Sushi X II

Noms: 3.25

Cost: $$

Address: 109 Atlantic Street

Stamford, CT

Phone: (203) 327-6888

Menu
Sushi X II on Urbanspoon

Creative sushi dishes, a festival of sights and tastes. Matsuri–Darien, CT

24 Feb

Attack of the Monster Shumai!!!

 

As our nice little vacation dwindled down to its last dregs, we found ourselves sore from snowboarding at Windham in the Catskills.  So, what else is there to do but recouperate with the help of some sushi?  So, we took to the handy-dandy seamlessweb.com again and found Matsuri in Darien with high ratings and  food that sounded fantastic.  It was a hard choice because they have quite an extensive menu of rolls and Matsuri Signature Rolls.  So, we checked the hell out of that ordering page:

1) Homemade Shumai with steamed pork and shrimp, topped with masago

2) Peanut Avocado Roll

3) Chocolate Beef Roll with crispy scallops, asparagus, grilled rare beef, and a light and sweet chocolate sauce

4) Ditmark Roll with pepper tuna, avocado, spicy salmon, and toppings of salmon, peanuts, and chili sauce

5)  Curry Salmon roll with spicy yellowtail, seaweed salad, salmon, curry sauce, and chervil

Ditmark Roll and Chocolate Beef Roll!

Well, let’s start with the four shumai:  unlike typical dainty little shumai, they were quite plump and juicy with goodness. The biggest shumai I’ve ever seen.  They were a bit cold, but they did come from Darien to Stamford to get to us.  The taste, though, was good, though the pork was just a tad fatty, and it was gently highlighted with the delicate mustard dipping sauce.  I hate mustard and I didn’t even realize it was mustard (Howie, I hope I haven’t disappointed you) until Kristien mentioned it.  So, well played Matsuri!

Peanut Avocado Roll. This was the cheapest roll of the bunch at $5, because it was so simple.  Rice, avocado, and crushed peanut on top made for a helluva good roll!

Now, onto my favorite roll:  Chocolate Beef Roll, a culinary challenge that I knew I had to tackle.  I figured it wasn’t so crazy considering how great mole sauce can be, so I trusted all the friends who told me how great Matsuri is.  Well, this roll was really amazing.  To begin, you have a nice thick piece of grilled beef on top, cooked rare.  You don’t get that grilled taste until you’ve bitten through the crispiness of the asparagus and the scallops and it’s such a nice kick that I just kind of oozed down to the floor like a puddle.  But, just as you get that excellent grilled taste you get the subtle rich chocolatiness of the sauce on top.  This is a winner in my book, but it’ll cost ya $13–well worth it.

Peanut Avocado and Curry Salmon Rolls

Next up was the Ditmark Roll and this was a great one, too.  The saltiness of the peanuts on top mixed well with the spiciness from the chili sauce, pepper tuna, and spicy salmon.  Trust me, all of these were finished and Kristien and I stared each other down at a few points to make sure that the rolls were divided up evenly. :)  Kristien took the Curry Salmon Roll and did some omnoming of her own.  She thought this roll was also very good as well with fresh yellowtail and salmon, just the right amount of curry to give it a kick and chevril to balance that out. YUM!

The verdict?  Matsuri has great sushi, excellent actually.  The menu was unique, the fish was fresh, and everything was beautiful both in presentation but also in culinary creativity.  The cost is a bit steep, but the food is worth giving it a shot. And take a chance and try the Chocolate Beef Roll, that’s my major recommendation here!

Noms:  3.75
Cost:  $$$
Matsuri
Address:  390 Post Road
Darien, CT 06820
Phone:  (203) 655-4999
Menu on seamlessweb

Matsuri on Urbanspoon

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