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Sep 14, 2007 10:42 AM

Good Sushi AND Great Ambiance?

I am traveling to Chicago with some friends in October. I am looking for something fun and upbeat trendy, but also has great food. I am also open to any fun ideas of things to do around the city.Thanks!

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  1. I would really recommend Coast in Bucktown. The whole neighborhood offers a lot to do and a lot to look at. Coast has so many nice maki choices, and I am a big fan of their exotic vegetable tempura plate. Miso soup is fantastic, just the thing for a chilly night in October perhaps. Definitely check this place out, and be sure to wander around and enjoy Bucktown/Wicker Park in all its artsy glory.

      1. re: jpschust

        Definitely agree about Mirai. Make a reservation for upstairs....more fun than the downstairs room. They make great drinks too. Order the Spicy Mono - - an octopus roll topped with spicy tuna with eel sauce. Outstanding (almost like dessert!). You can also just let the chef prepare a platter for you at his whim and will get to enjoy some new things.

        I am not a fan of Coast as I find it very inconsistent.

        You may also consider Bob San, also on Division, in Wicker Park. I do not think it is as good as Mirai, but it is a fun place and the sushi, for more of a neighborhood spot, is fresh and dependable.

        1. re: NDJ

          The only problem with the upstairs section of Mirai is they allow smoking. How I can't wait until Chicago goes smoke free.

        2. re: jpschust

          I completely agree about Mirai. The same owners have another restaurant, Japonais, which also has very good sushi. I prefer Mirai, but Japonais is more of a scene, if that's what you are looking for.

          1. re: SuzMiCo

            I would agree - Japonais has the best mix of amazing interior design, people watching, and very good creative sushi. In fact, Bradgelina stopped by here for dinner when they were in town several weeks back, so you don't get any trendier than that. I prefer the sushi at the more traditional Mirai, but for the overall experience I would say Japonais.

        3. I'm a big fan of Oysy. They have a location downtown at 50 E Grand, near Michigan Ave. It's never too crowded, and the prices are decent. The fish is always elegantly presented and very fresh. If you go for weekday lunch, they have a set lunch for $14 which includes sushi or cooked fish entree, salad, miso soup, CA roll, tempura, and tofu cake. I've only been to Mirai once, and thought it was just ok.

          1. I'm also a Bob San fan here. It's a combination place for me because the fish is usually pretty darn good, and you can laugh at all of the hipster, need to be seen folks ordering the "fancy" mega maki rolls filled with tempura, and topped with random ingredients, arranged like a creature etc. There are plenty of pretty people here, and you can enjoy the scenery while having some pretty good cuts of sushi. Wabi and Mirai also have the trendy thing going along with super fresh fish, but for that genre, imo, the best bang for the buck is Bob San. There are places that I think offer better sushi, but are not as "upbeat." I'd imagine SushiSambaRio might REALLY be up your alley as well.