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Apr 12, 2009 11:53 AM

El's Japanese Fusion, Marda Loop (Cgy)

I took the opportunity with yesterday's glorious weather to walk to CFM and on the way home had lunch (yes on a Saturday) at El's Japanese Fusion in Marda Loop- this is in the space next to Belmont Diner that was once Pharaoh's. The reason I went is that, although it's never blown me away, it had been many months since my last visit and I'd been noticing a flurry of almost over-the-top glowing reviews at places like yelp and (which has a very big dining forum). I just got two rolls- one was avocado and the other "spicy tataki maki" which is sort of like globefish's crazy buster but the seared tuna is outside and raw inside- opposite of the crazy buster. I'm not sure if I'd give my food as salivating a review as I've read but I must say that both were excellent. The avocado maki has avocado inside and outside so in one roll you get, basically, an entire avocado. The spicy tuna was great- spicy sauce is a tad sweet and seems to have that Korean chili condiment that they also use at Uptown, but as with the avocado, the this is the value here: there is a LOT of tuna in this roll.

The two rolls came to about $16 and were very filling. Not a bad deal at all. Rice is pretty much perfect too, so I'll try El's more often.

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  1. The chicken yakitori is great, too. It comes out a little slower than the average appetizer, because the pieces are huge and it's grilled to order.

    1. Does anyone know what their opening hours are? I tried calling 4 times today and yesterday, but no one picked up the phone. I'd like to try them on a weekend but I'm afraid that we may not get a table if I don't make a reservation.

      Thanks in advance!

      1 Reply
      1. re: Anomay

        Closed Mondays, lunch is 12:30 (yes 12:30) to maybe 2 Tues-Sun, dinner is... never been for dinner, maybe 5-10?

      2. somebody at wrote (June 6th?) that El's was closing?!?!?! I haven't been there in a couple of weeks (sick) but can anybody else (Marda Loopers?) see if there's any truth to this?

        4 Replies
        1. re: John Manzo

          I was just there the past Sat and the Sat prior (I know, we liked it so much that we went 2 weekends in a row), no sign of closing ...

          1. re: Anomay

            Had lunch today, finally well enough to climb those hills from Bankview- and it's very much open. Maybe what the poster meant was that the business is for sale (which doesn't necessarily mean anything will "close") and I didn't ask about that, but from my perspective nothing has changed.

            Lunch was one spicy tataki maki, one yam tempura maki, and two huge succulent pieces of unagi nigiri, fantastic!

            1. re: John Manzo

              We were at El's Tuesday afternoon and I can confirm it is still open. I asked the young lady who was working there and she said the place was never for sale. In fact there isn't a for sale sign anywhere.

              We ordered 4 rolls and it was very good; el's, jumbo, dynamite and rainbow. All presented on one large dish which I prefer. It was pleasing to the eye and palatte. It was fresh and tasty. I would definately recommend this to anyone and will be going back regularly.

              1. re: aragingbull

                El's has a well-deserved passionate following and it would seem like utter folly for them to close or change hands now- it's good to hear what I suspected, this this rumour was baseless.