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Sushi reccs please

I'm coming to town for a conference next week and would love to find a great place for sushi. I'm staying downtown, so I'd prefer to stay in that area. Price really isn't too much of an issue. I'm happy to take any recommendations.

Thanks!

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    1. re: cstr

      I think that thread mostly covers Kaito.

      As far as close to downtown, my pick is Hane Sushi, which is a short cab ride away in hillcrest.

      Call for hours as they close pretty early during the week.

      If you want sushi a little later, the only game in town is Harney Sushi in old town (also a short cab ride away).

      It should be noted that Harney Sushi is more of a "party sushi" joint ie rolls with names like "The Rock and Roll!" etc.

      And mayo squiggles around. Stuff like that.

      1. re: stevewag23

        How come?

        Freshness?

        Certain dishes?

        Cost + quality ratio?

        Service?

        Scene?

        Serves late? ie no problem getting served at 4am?

        Underground club in the back?

        Doubles as an after hours, serves alcohol till 5am?

        Models?

        1. re: scottca075

          Now that is a good post. I like to see those kind of breakdowns.

          I have to go with quality of fish and service.

    2. The Fish Market has an excellent sushi bar - super fresh fish, excellent rice, nice cuts. Order off the chalkboard above the bar for some interesting fish. Mostly traditional rolls. Plus, it should be walking distance from you and on the water - nice views. The main establishment is pretty fair to average but the sushi bar and oyster bar are quite excellent.

      Further afield Sushi Ota
      Kaito (best in town but quite a drive)
      Hane Sushi as already mentioned

      1. Shino Sushi and Kappo
        838 West Ash St
        (between California St & 9th Ave)
        San Diego, CA 92101
        (619) 255-2527

        Pretty new resturaunt that is a short cab ride from downtown. They also have a "kappo" style menu that is good if you go with people that are not sushi lovers. Good food, good service

        2 Replies
        1. re: Eatocracy

          Interesting.

          Can you elaborate on this place a little?

          Best dishes?

          Hours?

          1. re: stevewag23

            I am not absolutely sure about the hours. I think they are closed on Mondays (typical for Japanese places) and are currently only open for dinner.

            I believe kappo just means cut, boil, stew or fry. So essentially almost everything that is not “sushi.” Two of the chefs use to be at Sushi Ota, Ken Lee and Robert Nakamura so you know the sushi is going to be good. From what I understood this restaurant was opened to preserve the sushi techniques that were passed down from Ota-san but also to allow the chef’s some freedom to develop their own culinary style. I guess Ota-san is pretty strict and doesn’t allow too much expression.

            As far as best dishes…I have had a few dishes off of their “kappo” menu. The pork belley was very tender and the cold duck dish wasn’t bad either. Tuna carpacio dish I also liked as well as this deep fried sushi rice topped with spicey tuna. Some of the dishes straddle the line between, sushi, fusion and kappo style. Sushi was very good too. I’ve been to Ota, Hane, Taka and Kaito and had Omakase at each place. You will get arguments for which is better and I think Shino will soon be added to the conversation.

        2. if you're coming all the way from Maryland you really owe it to yourself to try for Kaito. I put it second only to Urasawa.

          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/792694

          1 Reply
          1. re: Rodzilla

            Sushi Ota. Not downtown but a short drive.

          2. Sushi Ota in Pacific Beach or if you want closer Azuki Sushi in Banker's Hill just up from Downtown.

            Kaito has a cult following and Urasawa isn't even top three in LA, maybe not top five.

            12 Replies
            1. re: scottca075

              How does Azuki Sushi stack up?

              It always seems empty, which I look as a real bad sign with sushi joints.

              1. re: stevewag23

                Azuki is close to downtown and okay, but not great, but I do like it better than Hane. If it wasn't close, I probably wouldn't go.

                1. re: scottca075

                  "but I do like it better than Hane'

                  How come?

                  Freshness?

                  Certain dishes?

                  Cost + quality ratio?

                  Service?

                  Scene?

                  Serves late? ie no problem getting served at 4am?

                  Underground club in the back?

                  Doubles as an after hours, serves alcohol till 5am?

                  Models?

                  1. re: stevewag23

                    The Models definitely help....

                    That and the freshness of the food, a lot of the non-fish items are locally sourced and organic, I like the attitude, or maybe lack of attitude, better than Hane, and the hours, while not as good as Harney Sushi, are good enough for me, they are open until 10PM nightly.

                    1. re: scottca075

                      Cool.

                      I will have to check it out. Thanks.

                      1. re: scottca075

                        ding ding ding ding....winner chicken dinner...buzz word..'Models'..

                2. re: scottca075

                  I take it you've been there, where would you recommend? I'd love to find something close to quality (if not exceeding) for much less of a price. The closest I had experienced was Kaito.

                  1. re: Rodzilla

                    I am probably being unfair To Urasawa, I somewhat rebel against the lavish praise for it. I wasn't sold on Ginza Sushi-ko before the first time I went in the late 80's because at the time the idea that I was going to fork $150 or so and he was going to tell me what I was going to eat smacked of "sushi Nazi" to me. Omakase was new to America and not the way it was when I had lived in Japan in the late 1960's, but by the time Masa moved to to NYC I was a devotee and I kind of resented Urasawa taking over his space. It was like he was intruding on Chef Masa's accomplishments.

                    That being said, I do like Kiriko and Sushi Zo better in terms of value and n/naka and Mori Sushi for the experience.

                    1. re: scottca075

                      thanks for that, I've been really intrigued by n/naka and definitely have it high on my list for places in LA. - it seems like a more contemporary kaiseki meal, and looks like a lot of fun.

                      1. re: Rodzilla

                        Mori is high on my list.... I heard he hand mills his own rice every day...

                        1. re: karaethon

                          Mori actually trained Niki Nakayama of n/naka, another reason I wanted to visit.

                  2. Try Sansai, they are great!!