Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Metro Portland >
Apr 7, 2010 06:17 PM

Japanese/Sushi in Portland?

Can anyone recommend a good sushi restaurant in Portland? We are there for the weekend and staying at The Governor Hotel -bonus for places within walking distance but farther is okay too.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I think the best places in town are Hiroshi, Murata, Bamboo and Zilla. In that order.

    1. Hiroshi is closer but Murata is still walkable from the Governor. Those are the two best choices in the area anyway...and they are at the high end price-wise for Portland (which is a heckuva lot lower than many other places).

      Haven't been to Masu, but that is the closest to the hotel.

      I usually head to Kurata (in Lake Oswego, just south of the city) or to Bamboo, personally, but if I was in your shoes, Hiroshi or Murata would fit the bill.

      450 5th St, Lake Oswego, OR 97034

      1. Are you a hardcore sushi person or casual? Are you from a place known for sushi? Context for you to judge my opinion: Off the top of my head, my favorites are Sebo in SF, Hiro behind the bar at Mitama on the border of Oakland/Berkley, Kirala after the crowds in Berkley and Tomoe in Manhattan. I worked behind a sushi bar in college and have picky tastes.

        I can recommend Masu. I havent been disappointed yet with the variety or quality. I have been eating lunch pretty regularly & sporadically at dinner. I liked Bamboo a lot too & appreciate their sustainable seafood policy. Masu is just a lot easier for you to get to on foot.

        I believe one of the sushi chefs at Masu is Vietnamese and a few dishes show it. The holladay role in particular and the sauteed calamari with jalapenos-delicious, both.

        The classics are certainly all there. Often they have seasonal special fish too like sanma, Ankimo Aji, Sea Trout. The regular nigiri, sashimi & maki suspects are always wonderful & fresh. Just a sweet spot all around.

        Its upstairs in a sort of mid-century, Alexander Calder-sake-box-mobile-curtained-space with great big windows. Pretty and interesting.They often have funny music going that I appreciate.

        Masu Sushi
        406 SW 13th Avenue, Portland, OR 97205

        11 Replies
        1. re: mmerino

          Thank you all for the help. We had dinner at Hiroshi on Friday night and it was excellent. We had a beef tongue appetizer (bonus!), Hiro roll (crab in the middle and tuna on top of the rice), the soft-shell crab roll, and a plate of chef's choice sashimi. It was unbelievably fresh. I want to go back and try the aji. I missed it on the menu. Just as we were finishing up, they served this to a gentlemen a few seats down the sushi bar. The presentation was really dramatic - the whole mackerel looked like it was jumping off the plate. The gentelemen beside me said he had tried it before and it was a delicacy.

          BTW, we had dinner at Higgins on Saturday night. Our waiter was a little daffy but the food - holy cow, was it fabulous! I live in Seattle and I'm not sure we have a better NW spot here. And the price was completely reasonable. You Portlanders are certainly lucky to have that place - a true gem.

          1. re: bourbongal

            FYI for next time - Masu has a 3-6 happy hour, weekdays only I think. 1/2 off nigiri and basic maki, plus Sapporo on special. Small, but good service, nice atmosphere, very fresh.

            1. re: kma_pdx

              Thanks - I'm already looking forward to a trip back and this sounds great.

              1. re: bourbongal

                Glad you had such a good experience here.

              2. re: kma_pdx

                WOW-thanks I was thinking about Masu for lunch but might try and Hold Off till 4 now!

            2. re: mmerino

              Do any of your rec's specialize in traditional sushi? Though I enjoy rolls and new sushi's, my first preference is traditional sushi so there is no hiding whether the fish is fresh.

              I plan on visiting Portland in about a month and will have a car; i can/would drive a bit to find a place that is focused on the ingredients rather than the new expressions of sushi. :)

              1. re: OrangeCone

                I liked Bamboo sushi for straight ahead fish. They do DO some fun stuff but the fact that they focus on sustainable fish seems to translate into a purity you'd probably appreciate.

                1. re: mmerino

                  Awesome; I am going to bookmark that. :)

                2. re: OrangeCone

                  I enjoyed Kurata in Lake Oswego. The fish was delicious, and I loved that they had kazunoko. and the hamachi collar was melt in your mouth.

                  450 5th St, Lake Oswego, OR 97034

                  1. re: OrangeCone

                    Try Murata--I'm not a sushi expert, but I believe that they're more traditional and don't have many rolls.

                    1. re: OrangeCone

                      If you are a purist, then Hiroshi is absolutely the best place in portland. Hiro is an impeccable sushi chef--his fish is always of excellent quality. Most of the sushi places in portland get their fish from the same distributor, but Hiro has gone to great lengths to secure his distributor, because he is such a stickler for quality. There aren't a lot of 'crazy' rolls or 'rolls that are bigger than your face' etc etc. it's just truly excellent sushi. He is more expensive than most places but so worth it.