Sushi Downtown Seattle / Belltown / Q.Anne.
Yes, I know - I'm sure this topic has been COVERED, but not for awhile I see. And please, no posts re. Nishino - I know - it's the best, IMHO. I'm looking for some insight as to the best sushi, perhaps combined with some atmosphere in the Downtown Seattle, Belltown, Queen Anne 'area'. I hear Red Fin is good, but I've never been there (apparently Bill Gates has, though). Is Red Fin good? Shiro? That other place on 2nd or 3rd? Wasabi Bistro? Where else? Thinking of a fun place to go this weekend...
If you're willing to go as far as Queen Anne, perhaps you should consider Kappo, in Fremont (above Chiso, on 36th and Fremont). Pluses: some less common seasonal items like hairy crab or kinmedai, some interesting cooked dishes, personalized attention (just the chef and 1 helper), beautiful mahogany sushi bar w/ uncrowded Zen-like atmosphere (faintly reminiscent of Urasawa in W. Hollywood), parking in garage below if call restaurant as you arrive. Minuses: Can be overpriced for what you get, must call ahead to confirm availability of seating and availability of cooked food items (went there once and he had no cooked food for us!), more limited sushi selection than bigger places. The quality of fish at Red Fin can be inconsistent in my experience. Same goes for Ume sake bar although it is better than Red Fin imo for variety of raw fish and cooked Japanese food, if you're looking for a noisier type of place.
I'll second Kappo and Chiso in Fremont, amazing reviews from good friends who love sushi.
Skip Wasabi Bistro, more of a place people go "to be seen?" kinda of a place. Not very good sushi, but a wide variety of rolls (some very odd) if the people in your party aren't really big into all the stips of raw fish. I've went a few times on weekends, but made reservations, can get packed.
Can't remember the cross streets, but Saitos is in the neighborhood of Wasabi Bistro and 10 times better imo. Not the cheapest sushi, but better service and higher quality sushi.
You mentioned atmosphere (not sure size of your party?).... Does anyone know if O'Asian has good sushi? I have went for dim sum, and really enjoyed the space and the ease of getting a large group in. Good service too. Just a thought.
I like Ototo on Queen Anne quiet a bit (top of the hill across from Opal). I haven't been to Kappo yet but it is on my short list of places to try.
If you are willing to travel a little north to Wallingford, you should try Rain Sushi (2208 N 45th). They offer traditional sushi as well as several fusion contemporary rolls. All of which are very good!! This place is a good bet if you love sushi and willing to try something new. The also offer live music on weekends, but get there early because is kind of small. I have never walked out of there unsatisfied!!!