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Sushi in the Keyport, Matawan, Redbank Area?

I live in Aberdeen & I desperately want to know: Is there any DECENT sushi in the area? It seems that every place I have tried has been good when they opened but then goes down hill. Oishi at Highway 36 & Poole in Union Beach was good at first but it was actually gross the last time I went a couple of months ago. Nearly the same with Kobe in Holmdel (but more like mediocre than disgusting.) Maybe I need to go to Red Bank? I would drive even further, like to Asbury, if anybody strongly recommends the place.

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  1. Have you tried Sushi by KAZU on RT9 in Howell ?
    Regarded by many & myself as excellent. Its across from the Ivy League restaurant in a small strip mall. I think you be happily surprised & will enjoy the experience very much.
    Kazu & his wife do sushi right for sure!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Tapas52

      No, I haven't! Thanks for the rec -- I will definitely try Kazu!

    2. The original comment has been removed
      1. My favorite in the area is Sono in Middletown, on Rt. 35. I don't remember the name of the mall, but it's acroos the highway from Boston Market. I've also been going to Fuji in Hazlet - also on rt. 35 alot lately. I have recently heard alot of good things about Oishi (recently meaning at least 3 times in the past week!) an was planning on trying it tomorrow for lunch...

        2 Replies
        1. re: DrewBB

          Drew, I know the OP had a bad experieince at Oishi but we've been frequenting there for several months now and have had nothing but good experiences.

          1. re: dani0622

            Actually, I was embarrassed to say that I had three consecutive bad experiences with Oishi b/c I felt like an idiot for persevering. When they first opened, they offered some really wonderful white tuna sashimi, but the fresh factor went south. Thanks DrewBB for the Sono rec.

        2. Try Kanji in Shrewsbury. It's been raved about on this board and in the papers. It's in the shopping center just off 35 behind Americana Diner. (Another great choice in its genre.)

          1 Reply
          1. re: cantkick

            Thanks cantkick, I have come across that name before so look forward to trying Kanji.

          2. I'll post this again but without the comment that was offensive to the Moderators!

            I am on a mission to try all of the sushi Monmouth County has to offer -- I've been to a lot of places! You can check my personal blog for reviews. I am in total agreement with you re: sushi joints around Aberdeen/Matawan/Keyport. They are average or mediocre at best. We have yet to try Blue Wasabi on Matawan Rd. So I was hoping that might be an unknown gem right in my back yard. I can dream, right? :)

            In any case, I have to say out of the dozens and dozens of Japanese restaurants I've been to, the absolute stand-out is the new Kanji Steakhouse & Sushi on Shrewsbury Avenue in Tinton Falls. http://www.kanjisteakhouse.com/index2...
            It is simply stellar!

            Another favorite is Ichiban on Route 35 in Ocean. We have gone several times and were never disappointed. Takara, also in Ocean, isn't bad either.

            As for decent sushi up this way, reports are that Kickys in Aberdeen is good. I can't speak to it recently as I have not been there lately, at least not since they have changed their menu to Pan Asian. I have also heard that Aki Sushi on Route 36 in Port Monmouth is "excellent". Some people seem to speak highly of Yumi in Sea Bright, too. They are all on my "to go" list at some point -- perhaps after my next Kanji experience - since Kanji certainly warrants a return visit in the near future!

            5 Replies
            1. re: DJMarilyn

              I agree 100% with DJMarilyn's recommendations. My top 3 in order are Kanji, Takara and Ichiban with Sawa (Eatontown) a close fourth.

              1. re: DJMarilyn

                DJMarilyn - Sorry to disappoint, If Blue Wasabi is the place right off of GSP exit 120 in that Strip Mall by pizza hut it is more mediocrity. Pretty cool name, but that's about it.

                1. re: angelo04

                  Yep, that's the one angelo. I figured I was dreaming. I will still try it so I can put if on my (growing) list of sushi restaurants I've gone to and report on my experience.

                2. re: DJMarilyn

                  Thanks DJMarilyn for the thoughtful response & number of suggestions. The weather's warming up & so is my craving for sushi -- not to mention the will to drive around looking for the good stuff. Thanks for the URL for Kanji. If you are a sashimi fan, I'd be curious to hear any further thoughts since certain establishments can do passable when adding seasoned rice to the fish, but when offering the fish "in the buff" the flaws become depressingly apparent!

                  Just to add via the 'edit' function. What I noticed most recently was this increasing tendency of the fish (in places that used to do better) to be pretty tasteless & to be also watery -- perhaps because the fish hadn't been frozen or thawed properly.

                  1. re: wilmap

                    Our favorite place for sashimi is, by far, Ichiban. We have found it to be quite fresh and the presentation quite visually appealing. We haven't been there since Sept. of last year, so I'm not sure if it has changed, but we would love to go back soon just for their sashimi!