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Uchi vs Uchiko?

k
KA1555 Mar 2, 2012 10:51 AM

Going to be in town next week for SXSW, and wanted to try either Uchi or Uchiko.

Was wondering if there was one that you guys would recommend over the other, and if so, why.

  1. m
    Mike B Mar 2, 2012 11:09 AM

    One of the biggest benefits to Uchiko is that the space is larger and you can make a reservation there. So, I'd suggest making one ASAP.

    I bet it will be hard to get into either restaurant during SXSW especially after Paul just won Top Chef.

    1. chispa_c Mar 2, 2012 05:24 PM

      Uchiko. Better bar, better parking. Same fantastic food.

      1. e
        ebloom Mar 2, 2012 07:04 PM

        We've eaten at both several times and I definitely prefer Uchi. Mostly because I just like the space better. The food is quite similar.

        1. o
          Optimista Mar 2, 2012 10:51 PM

          In 2010, my favorite meal of the year was at Uchiko. In 2011, my favorite meal was at Uchi.

          IMO, the flavor profiles at Uchi are a little more subtle. Uchiko's flavors tend to be more bold and more out of the box. Both are outstanding, both are innovative, and I don't think you'll be disappointed by either - which you prefer is just a matter of personal preference. Some days, I want Uchi. Some days, I want Uchiko.

          Uchi doesn't take reservations, so usually requires a long wait. Probably longer during SXSW. Uchiko takes reservations, but between Paul Qui's Top Chef win and SXSW, it might be a challenge to get one.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Optimista
            c
            chrisdds98 Mar 3, 2012 12:53 AM

            Uchi does take reservations on opentable...

            1. re: chrisdds98
              m
              Mike B Mar 3, 2012 10:25 AM

              Interesting. That makes the choice a little more difficult.

              If you have a reservation and don't have to wait, I'd choose Uchi over Uchiko due to the intimacy of the smaller space. Plus, it will be closer to all the SXSW action.

              Uchiko is better if you have to wait for your table due to the large bar area.

          2. popvulture Mar 3, 2012 02:17 PM

            Yep, Uchi does take reservations. I've found that a lot of times you'll get stuck with a 10PM res, but if you go early and have some drinks at the bar (I usually am in a party of 2, can't speak for larger), you'll be seated a lot earlier than your actual res.

            I haven't been to Uchiko yet, but I booked a res during SX and it was pretty easy to come by. If I were you though, I'd get on it fast. Since I can't speak for Uchiko yet, I can't compare, but Uchi's one of my favorite restaurants on the planet, and if Uchiko's even remotely like it, you probably can't go wrong with either.

            1 Reply
            1. re: popvulture
              bubbleboy79 Mar 4, 2012 01:13 AM

              They're just different. Uchi is more feminine, lighter and nuanced, and Uchiko more masculine, assertive and heartier. As they evolve, their menus continue to coalesce. I love both, but if I had to pick, it would be Uchiko.

            2. m
              mlin1 Mar 9, 2012 04:25 PM

              Uchiko is definitely my favorite though i love them both. Uchiko is a Bigger space, more interesting food, easy parking and reservations available all night. At uchi the opentable reservations are either very early or very late (unless that has changed recently). Also the food at uchiko has a southeast Asian influence, thanks to the exec chef Paul qui. Uchi is creative Japanese with a Texas twist, but the dishes rarely have the southeast Asian flavors (kaffir lime, etc). In addition the uchiko menu includes some dishes from uchi (hamachile, wagyu hot rock, Maguro with goat cheese, shag roll), but not the other way around. If you go to uchi you will miss out in the wagyu short rib, fried milk dessert, and the jar jar duck(with rosemary smoke, named by food and wine magazine as one of the top ten dishes in the country in 2011). The only down side to uchiko is that it is located near the medical center offices and a pretty boring quiet area. Whenever we take guests there we end up driving south or to downtown to get a drink or see a show.

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