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Sushi restaurants in Denver?

Heyteacher Jun 24, 2008 05:23 PM

My favorite is Banzai on Leetsdale and I know everyone LOVES Sushi Den. Is anyone partial to any others in town and why? This is one type of cuisine, especially in a land-locked state, that I'm leery of just trying somewhere without a good recommendation. Thanks!

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  1. Veggo RE: Heyteacher Jun 24, 2008 05:37 PM

    Sushi Tazu, 3rd and Fillmore in Cherry Creek North. Equal to anything on Pearl Street, and without the wait, usually, and much smaller and intimate. A family affair with enormous talent. Impressive selection of premium saki's, and lots of seating at the granite bar with beautiful views of iced fresh fish.
    An example ot the family's kindness: before Christmas a few years ago they gave me a magnum of what I knew was their most premium saki, and two wooden saki boxes, as a holiday gift.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Veggo
      e_bone RE: Veggo Jun 25, 2008 02:08 PM

      Veggo- I love Tazu as well but it needs to be stated that "intimate" can also mean "extremely crowded with diners standing over your table staring at your food and wishing they could sit down". It's a weeknight place for us. Bill - I didn't try Sonoda's "back in the day" but am not a big fan now. It's got a cafeteria/chinese buffet quality to it. Looking forward to trying Banzai and Sasa (bring the platinum card). As posted previously- our go-to spots are (were) Sushi Den (weeknights), Hapa (Cherry Creek), Sushi Wave (Centennial), Bara (Greenwood Village) and Mori (RIP) <sniff>

      1. re: e_bone
        Megiac RE: e_bone Jun 25, 2008 02:34 PM

        Did Mori close?

        1. re: Megiac
          e_bone RE: Megiac Jun 26, 2008 08:42 AM

          Meg- yes... black arm bands... deep sorrow..

    2. Bill Hunt RE: Heyteacher Jun 24, 2008 07:02 PM

      We always had great sushi and tempura at Sonoda's. Most often, we dined at the Aurora location, but did venture downtown with the same results. Do not know if things have changed though, as it's been 10 years, since we lived there, and 5, since we last dined there.


      3108 S Parker Rd, Aurora, CO 80014

      Sonoda's Sushi Seafood: Downtown (Lo Do)
      1620 Market St, Denver, CO 80202

      1 Reply
      1. re: Bill Hunt
        Megiac RE: Bill Hunt Jun 25, 2008 02:34 PM

        Bill, I do think things have gone downhill at Sonoda's since you left. I've not eaten there, but have heard not good things from those who have.

        My favorites are Sushi Sasa for high-end sushi and atmosphere and Mori for delicious, cheap sushi in a space with little to no atmosphere (although they do karaoke!). The place in Writer's Square (Sushi Han?) is also perfectly serviceable if you are downtown and craving sushi for lunch.

      2. tatamagouche RE: Heyteacher Jun 25, 2008 08:05 AM

        Sushi Sasa at 15th & Platte is superb. A lot of Sushi Den transplants work there. The omakase's gorgeous (about 1/2 cooked dishes, 1/2 raw); the regular menu emphasizes daily specials, from razor clams to Spanish mackerel...

        2 Replies
        1. re: tatamagouche
          luckylily RE: tatamagouche Jun 26, 2008 11:37 AM

          A second vote for Sushi Sasa. Lunch special is simple (items like salmon terriyaki) and well-priced. But go for the omakase! An amazing variety of food, elegantly presented and tailored to your comfort level. I eat just about anything, and the monkfish liver I had there once was incredible. However, if you are only interested in rolls, you might be happier with a place like Bonzai.

          1. re: luckylily
            tatamagouche RE: luckylily Jun 26, 2008 11:45 AM

            It's surprising how good the desserts that wrap up the omakase are too, and I don't have a much of a sweet tooth.

        2. p
          Pastajohn RE: Heyteacher Jun 25, 2008 10:10 AM

          I'm curious why you're leery of sushi in a land-locked state. Isn't it time to put to bed this old wives fear? We're closer to salmon and other West Coast or Hawaiian fish than any New York or Chicago restaurant. Closer to the Florida and Eastern Canada species than any restaurant in San Francisco or Seattle.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Pastajohn
            tatamagouche RE: Pastajohn Jun 25, 2008 12:54 PM

            What's more, Sasa (and I'm sure many others) ships some fish direct from markets like Tsujiki in Tokyo...just like many of the celebrated coastal sushi bars.

            1. re: tatamagouche
              Heyteacher RE: tatamagouche Jun 26, 2008 10:30 AM

              Which is even more reason to act on recs. Just because we're in a land-locked state doesn't mean that ALL sushi restaurants ship in. Isn't that why we have this board, PJ?

          2. i
            itri RE: Heyteacher Jun 25, 2008 02:14 PM

            Although I love sushi, I haven't had the opportunity to try very many places here in Denver as my husband is adamantly opposed to pretty much anything from the sea. That said, I had a girls' night out at Fontana Sushi (near Southwest Plaza, I think they have another location as well) a few months ago, and thought that the sushi there was really outstanding. I've also tried Kassai Sushi on Quebec, and it was perfectly fine, but nothing great. Will I be permanently banned from Chowhound if I admit that my absolute favorite California Roll ever is from Tokyo Joe's? (ducking and running...)

            3 Replies
            1. re: itri
              ClaireWalter RE: itri Jun 26, 2008 03:48 AM

              Itri - Your husband harbors a major misconception about sushi. Sushi contains rice and usually nori (seaweed), but not necessarily fish/shellfish, rawor otherwise. Americanized sushi, esp includes many types that feature only rice, nori and vegetables -- e.g., California roll that you also like.

              My husband isn't fond of sushi, but he always finds a teriyaki, tempura or noodle dish to order.

              Glad you have GFs with whom to indulge in sushi, even if your husband is "adament."

              1. re: ClaireWalter
                itri RE: ClaireWalter Jun 26, 2008 09:42 PM

                Well, he's also opposed to vegetables, so that doesn't help a whole lot! :p

                He would be fine with a teriyaki or noodle dish, but the "idea" of going to a sushi place is enough to turn him off. I'm fortunate that most nice restaurants have some variation of meat and potatoes for him. :-)

                1. re: itri
                  leahjensen RE: itri Jun 27, 2008 10:45 AM

                  Sonoda's is not so good. Sushi Sasa is probably the best. Sushi Den is next (very busy atmosphere though--a plus for some a negative for others). Kaddy Corner from Sushi Den is a restaurant called "Izakaya Den" which was opened by the same owners of Sushi Den. This is a french-japanese fushion tapas restaurant--if you can imagine that. There are myo rolls (make your own); and a few other rolls with the same quality fish as Sushi Den, but then there are also more "french" dishes as well, all in appetizer sizes. The ambience is pretty cool in there, though I think the sushi, while decent, is not as good as Sushi Den. This is a good place to go if you are going with beginners or people who don't like sushi. Then you can have your cake and they can have theirs! ;)

            2. u
              ultigirlinCO RE: Heyteacher Jul 5, 2008 11:55 PM

              Suburban sushi is its own art form.

              We, by chance, ended up at Fontana's as well. The food was good at a decent price, giving me hope that this tough formula can work.

              I first fell in love with sushi up in Golden at sushi Uokura. Some of the best sake (salmon sashimi) I have ever had. I hope they are still holding it down.

              The one that hasn't won me over is Namiko's in Arvada. At the time, sushi was an extreme luxury but I was craving it. I ordered the sake and it came out orange. Bright, parking cone orange because they used farmed salmon. It was the most underwhelming sushi I have ever had. Bland. Instead of a buttery, almost steak-like texture, I got stringy and sort of mealy.

              So, alas, I'm still searching for sushi in Arvada.

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