Friday, August 19, 2011

Kushi Izakaya & Sushi

Last date I was here: 08/19/2011

Restaurant: Kushi Izakaya & Sushi (

Location: Mt. Vernon Square - Convention Center

Total Rating: 3.75
Food: 4, Price: 3, Service: 3, Ambience: 4, Accessibility: 5

Summary: Kushi Izakaya & Sushi is a new trendy Japanese restaurant located in the heart of Mt. Vernon Square that is buzzing most nights with patrons enjoying the freshly prepared sushi at the bar or gathered around the entertaining grills. With loud music playing in this fairly spread out warehouse-like dining room, the atmosphere is very upbeat, but some of the tables are very close together. The servers are casually dressed in t-shirts and jeans and are prompt with orders. A vast menu is available with various sushi, nigiri, maki, noodle dishes, as well as katsu and other cooked meals from the grill. Closest Metro is Mt. Vernon Square.

It's Restaurant Week again in the city, and Kushi was our first stop. I was eager to try this place, as I am a big fan of sushi in general, and had read several remarks comparing Kushi to the most awesome and renowned Sushi Taro. They had two choices for the price fixed RW menu - a sushi set or a robata (grilled) set. We decided to order one of each so we could share. Additionally, we ordered cocktails - Keith a Dark & Stormy featuring Japanese plum liquor; and myself the Shochu Breeze featuring refreshing cucumber juice. Our miso soup arrived first - piping hot and each bowl with 3 hearty clams. The soup was very tasty and I surprisingly liked eating it, despite the humid 80-90 degree weather we are still having. Not half-way through our soup, the full robata set arrived. A little annoying, since our table was so small, but understandable due to the pumping out of plates to accommodate the weekend and RW rush. Half-way through the robata set, the sushi set arrived. At initial glance, we had concerns if our meal would be filling enough, but at the end, I left satisfied. The sushi was fresh - yet not as superior as Sushi Taro's - and the accouterments such as the pickled gobo root and seaweed salad especially flavorful and delicious. They were a different twist on classic Japanese side dishes. The gelato dessert was very unique and when combined together, tasted like peanut butter. Overall, I enjoyed my meal and the ambience that Kushi has to offer. Since not much else is located in this area, I might visit Kushi again if looking for a good spot to satisfy a sushi craving.

What I ate:

Miso soup
Kinpira simmered gobo root
Potato salad
Seaweed salad
Nigiri sushi 5 pcs: maguro tuna, hamachi yellow tail, white fish, salmon, ebi shrimp
Maki roll: salmon
Sea Salt Gelato

Plus Keith ate:

Miso soup
Kinpira simmered gobo root
Potato salad
Miso salmon
Chicken sous-vide with peanut sauce
Kushikatsu deep fried skewers: shrimp and pork

Bowl of white rice
Black Sesame Gelato

Kushi Izakaya & Sushi on Urbanspoon

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