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Best Sushi in the OC

My girlfriend just got a promotion and her boss is letting her expense a fine dinner for two on the company as a bonus. She wants sushi so I suggested Urasawa. After giggling and realizing that she needs to keep her job, we need other options. She also doesn't want to drive too far from home (near South Coast Plaza).

So, what's the best extravagant sushi experience within 30 minutes of Costa Mesa. Budget limit is high but not quite Urasawa level.

Thanks!

p.s. Food is more important than atmosphere and service

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  1. Good thing Costa Mesa is sushi central.

    As far as as I'm concerned Costa Mesa has the TRINITY:

    At SCP, there's Hamamori, probably the most expensive of them all.

    Nearby, there's Ikko, very good "free style" sushi.

    Down near Triangle Square, there's Sushi Shibucho.

    Of course, there's Sushi Wasabi (which I personally haven't tried)...but that's in Tustin.

    http://monstermunching.com

    2 Replies
    1. re: elmomonster

      And Maki-Zushi, also in Tustin, well within the 30-minute limit.

      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        Ah forgot about Maki. Yes, Yoshi will take care of you. He's not as shocked anymore when people ask for omakase. The last time, he served me live uni, among other exotics I've never had before. Live uni -- a different beast than the stuff that comes pre-packaged.

    2. There is also Koi in PCH in Seal Beach, at the edge of your 30 minute radius. Its not swank, and its nowhere near Urasawa level for price. A pretty nice dinner for two at the sushi bar usually runs us around $150. Since starting to go there several years ago, we haven't even been tempted to go anywhere else. We always sit in front of Daigo [sp?], who has a very loyal following. Taka also has a very good reputation.

      1 Reply
      1. re: lawdog262

        Taka is my guy and the lead or head sushi man. He use to go out everyday to pick the fish himself when they were smaller. I always have him make something special. Then when it gets served to me, everyone around wants one too. Geez, now I am hankering for some sushi.

      2. Had a great meal at Kasen in Fountain Valley. Very traditional, very sushi gen like. They even give you what I would amount to as Japanese amuse bouche's.

        200 for 2 people after tax/tip omakase.

        1. I think Bluefin at Crystal Cove shopping center, just south of CDM is incredible. A little pricey but nothing that will get her fired. Start with drinks at either Javiars or Mastro's Ocean Club in the same center. Cheers.

          2 Replies
          1. re: tmarr1

            Concur on Bluefin. That's actually where I'd go if I weren't limited to the SCP area.

            But then, I should've read the post more carefully. The OP said 30 minute radius, which Bluefin is definitely within.

            Here's a post of mine:
            http://elmomonster.blogspot.com/2006/...

            1. re: elmomonster

              I concur too. If you're dining on the company dime, head down to the coast and get you some bluefin. Get the omakase and let them do all the work.

          2. My favorite has got to be WAFU in Costa Mesa, off of Red Hill Avenue. It's a tiny hole-in-the-wall kind of place that's more Californian than Japanese. Lots of fun rolls.
            You have to try the spicy tuna guacamole. You MUST.

            2 Replies
              1. re: ns1

                I agree Wafu isn't level of Urasawa or Bluefin but I agree with nomnomnoms that it is good. Great neighborhood joint.