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Feb 21, 2010 06:00 PM

Kappo closed until Summer - now what?

I don't live in Seattle, but I am now a regular (I visit every few months) I have never tried sushi in Seattle , but that is on the top of my list for my next visit. I had my heart set on Omakase at Kappo.

I just heard that it is closed and will be relocating somewhere in Eastlake in the Summer.

Is there a good alternative ... I don't want to wait until Summer! I will be visiting next month.

The best Omakase I ever had was in Vancouver at a place called Octopus Garden. I opted for the $100 dinner and it was worth every single penny. I was stuffed to the gills and was able to try so many different things.

I want another experience like that.

Where should I go?

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  1. There is a lot written on the Seattle Board and its predecessor, the Pacific Northwest Board, on sushi in Seattle. Although most sushi restaurants (“sushi-ya”) offer some cooked items, they are not “kappo,” referring to a type of restaurant in Japan that features cooked food. (“Ka” means to cut ingredients with a knife while “Po” is the act of heating them by grilling, simmering, or frying.) If you are looking more for cooked food than for sushi and sashimi, some possibilities are the venerable Maneki, the oldest Japanese restaurant in Seattle, Kushibar (some good stuff mixed with some not-so-good stuff), Kaname Izakaya (good ramen), Maekawa Bar, Ginza (in Bellevue), , and Wann Japanese Izakaya, You can get some reasonably good stuff at these places, though nothing to blow you away like, say, the kaiseki at Urasawa in Los Angeles, or the family-style dishes at Okan in San Diego...

    For sushi and sashimi, some (not me) like Nishino, which aspires to be the Matsuhisa of Seattle. (The itamae, Tatsu Nishino, previously worked at Matsuhisa.) Others, not me, like Mashiko in West Seattle for a young, hip scene commendably featuring sustainable sushi. Shiro, although he no longer owns his namesake sushi restaurant, is a master itamae, but the prices are very high, Shiro-san only works three days a week, it is difficult to get a seat at the section of the sushi bar where you will be served by Shiro-san rather than someone else, and if you are sharing the sushi bar with some of Shiro-san’s high-end regular customers, there’s a substantial risk that you will feel neglected and disfavored. You could go to Chiso, a sushi-ya that used to be a sister restaurant to Kappo, but since a change in ownership, the reviews have been mixed. My personal choice for high quality sushi and sashimi at a relative moderate price (although certainly not cheap) is Kisaku, which has the largest variety of unusual and seasonal specialties of all the sushi-ya in Seattle. I have posted often and enthusiastically about Kisaku on Chowhound, the most recent post being just a few days ago (