Fashion Show Mall (last visit: September 2007).
This is a rapidly expanding chain restaurant, with the emphasis on being trendy. Per its web site, "the music is pumping, the mood is upbeat and the atmosphere is as stimulating as a big bite of wasabi."
Sushi, plus an assortment of other dishes: teriyaki, noodles, katsu. The sushi emphasis is on rolls with all sorts of stuff mixed in. How about a Viva Las Vegas roll: an artificial crab and cream cheese roll, battered and fried, then topped with spicy tuna, crab mix, and lotus root, THEN topped with bbq sauce and fried spinach flakes.
The design is simple, with lots of light wood and a black industrial ceiling. Light is provided by a number of blood red globes. Music, at a moderate volume, consisted mostly of blues and rock.
The sushi bar is poorly designed. While the sushi chefs try to be friendly, the bar is so deep that it was difficult to be heard over the music. I view this as a major flaw.
Since this was my first meal here, I opted for some basic sushi choices. They all suffered from a basic flaw: rice that was too soft, and lacked flavor. Not a good start. Now, on to the particulars:
- hamachi (yellowtail). The fish was fresh enough but, even given the mild nature of hamachi, was bland.
- unagi (barbecued eel): The eel was barely warm. The sauce was watery.
- flying fish roe with a quail egg: Good. The rich egg flavor and the crunchy roe made the rice's deficiencies less important.
- amaebi (raw sweet shrimp): The shrimp were fresh enough, but lacked flavor. On request, the heads are fried. No tempura batter was used, which I thought odd but not bad. The heads were crisp, but overcooked and somewhat dry. Nonetheless, RA Sushi get points for even offering this selection.
The sushi was very disappointing. Go for the atmosphere. Maybe the more exotic rolls are good. Just don't go for regular sushi.
The meal was $44, plus tax and tip.
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