26 1 / 2012
Sake Sushi marks our first foray into Korean food, sort of…
Technically, Sake Sushi is a Japanese restaurant. You can probably guess this from the name, which pays homage to both a Japanese drink, and a Japanese food, in that order. But, Sake Sushi combines its Japanese fare with an abundance of Korean Banchan, making for a rather unusual dining experience.
At first, we were overwhelmed by the sheer complexity of ordering. There were no less than 5 distinct menus, each with a variety of different options, and the blaring J-Pop wasn’t exactly helping.
Deciphering the “Combos” menu basically requires a PhD in probability theory:
But we somehow managed to order one combo, a seaweed salad, the house roll, veggie pancakes and octopus balls.
Beth warned that she can’t handle her sake, so we elected to get a bottle of the delicate Pink Sayuri, which the waitress assured us was sweet and popular with the ladies:
Beth still didn’t like it.
But all was forgiven as a flurry of plates arrived bearing delicious treats. We kept asking, “Who ordered this!?” and the answer always seemed to be, “It comes with the combo”.
Note: though they accept cards, if you order a dish off the combo menu, you must pay for your whole meal in cash for some reason… (tax dodge?)
But order a combo you must! For this is your gateway to a plethora of delicious fusion Banchan. For example, our combo came with a refreshing passionfruit-dressed salad, crisp house-made potato chips (which were really good!), and a spicy and welcome variation on Kimchi:
There was also a rich and creamy corn and cheese dish (better than it looks):
Some mussel soup (which A.J. refused to try):
Tasty Salmon whatever-this-is:
As well as some sashimi, and some other white fish too…AND THAT WAS ALL BANCHAN! We hadn’t even gotten to the real food yet.
Finally, our actual orders started arriving. The Wakame salad got Beth’s blessing:
The house roll was a lightly charred and crunchy treat:
The pancake was perfectly ketchupy - and we mean that in a good way:
And the octopus balls made for a satisfyingly doughy mouthful:
Our special guest and medical resident Meg demonstrated the freaky principals of Bonito flake reanimation:
Unfortunately, the headlining dish of our combo was almost too hot to eat both temperature and spice-wise:
“I need more water!” A.J. tried and failed to communicate to the waitress, mid-bite:
But it was really our own fault for listening to Dan and thinking we could handle something called, “Blazing Fire Chicken”. Dan showed no remorse (though he was seriously sweating by the end of the meal):
Nonetheless, everyone was completely satiated, except A.J. (our resident “stick in the mud”) who nibbled timidly at the seafood dishes and was left “a little hungry”. But whatevs - he knew what he was getting into when we started this blog!
Sake Sushi’s delicious and unique fusion stylings were a bonafide hit. With all the Banchan, we polished off over a dozen different plates of food and even with sake it only came to $17.50 per person (combo!). Given that we actually ordered so little, we can’t wait to go back and try more (you know, in, like, a year when we’re done with this shit).
And for the record - we all agreed that it’s at least comparable, if not better, than that overhyped izakaya place Guu, which sits just east of Koreatown.
Only four restaurants in and we’re already worried that Sake Sushi may be the best joint in K-Town: an astonishing 4.5 snowflakes!