Sushi in St. Louis?
The last post to these boards about St. Louis sushi was in early 2009 and things change quickly (both the quality of the fish and also the number of restaurants). What are the current favorite sushi spots in St. Louis, both for service and, obviously, for the fish? How are the prices? And are any of those all-you-can-eat sushi lunch buffets any good?
I'm a casual and infrequent, but enthusiastic, sushi eater and no authority on the subject.
I've tried two of the local AYCE sushi places: Blue Ocean in U-City and Blue Sea at 141 and Olive. I wasn't impressed by either, though if I had to choose one, I would go to Blue Ocean as it seemed to have the slight edge in quality and a larger edge in refinement and construction of the rolls. The fish at both places seemed "tired." I won't go so far as to say "not fresh," because it didn't smell bad or taste bad, but it seemed less lovingly cared for somehow. I can't quite quantify it. It just didn't have that moist, cool, vibrant quality that I've experienced in the few outstanding sushi experiences I've had.
I enjoyed my trip to Miso on Meramec. There were a couple unique and tasty rolls there, and generally the quality of the fish seemed good to me. "Elegant" and "Sophisticated" were adjectives I'd use to describe their sushi. It didn't come off gimmicky, like some places seem. Of course, it seemed expensive even for sushi, but I'm usually dining on a budget. The nigiri was fine, but I don't remember any stand outs.
Momoyama in Chesterfield has some hit and miss rolls. They seem a little liberal with the mayo (a sushi ingredient of which I am not generally a fan) in certain rolls, but the fish seemed of sufficiently high quality that I would be comfortable recommending it. I enjoy a salad they have (I think it may be called the Tsunami Salad). It has crab, shrimp, and octopus on mixed greens with a spicy dressing (I think it's mainly a drizzle of siracha) and crispy onions. I also like their octopus sunomono.
I go to Oishi in Chesterfield Valley for the teppanyaki lunch, and occasionally order a spider roll, which is my favorite roll. They do a good version of it, IMO. Speaking of soft shell crab, I also had lunch at another Chesterfield Valley restaurant, Yagu. They had a nice soft shell crab app with two very tasty dipping sauces. One was kind of a spicy, mustardy and the other was a sweetish, soyish kind of sauce, I think. I don't really remember the rest of my lunch, so I assume it wasn't remarkable, but I think about that app from time to time and will probably head back again at some point. Not exactly sushi, but....
Those are the sushi places I've been to since 2009. Not a very exhaustive list, but I'm sure others will chime in.