Sunday, April 15, 2007

Food: A Sushi Survey

Finding good sushi outside of Japan is a chore. Finding good sushi in Gainesville is damn near impossible. Here's some of my takes on local eateries - you may find some uncomfortable reflections of raw-fish-joints that you've visited in your home town...

1) Ichiban - A pleasant interior with typical Japanese restaurant atmosphere. Service was pretty good. The rice, unfortunately, was consistently mushy and not very appetizing. The sushi was passable, but a bit expensive, especially for lunch. I'd consider coming again, but I wouldn't jump at the chance.

2) Miya Sushi - Again, typical Japanese restaurant decor (everyone likes blond wood tables and paper screens, I guess). Our waitress was hardly seen, even though the place was empty. The portions were tiny, the quality was below-average, and we were all left hungry. Pass.

3) Miraku - More of a hibachi place than an actual sushi bar, which is a bad sign. The sushi took forever to come out (they only had one person making it), and it didn't taste that great. Again, small portions and big prices. It's enough to make you want to grab something from the grocery store.

4) Dragonfly: Rolls & Bowls - A decent place - it's not a sit-down, full-service restaurant like its downtown big brother, but a fast casual joint serving quickly-thrown-together rolls. The prices are a bit more fair than at the other restaurants. $18 gets you 24 rolls, which ain't too bad. Quality is decent, but a far cry from the best I've had. I'd visit here once in awhile.

5) Bento's - Another fast-casual type of place. This is a popular Gainesville spot, but I think their noodle bowls are a better value. As sushi goes, the quality is slightly worse than Dragonfly, but not by much. Again, you're going to have to spend in the double digits if you want to be full...

Moral of the story, I guess, is that if you want to conserve the ducats, yoou're going to need to eat non-sushi meals.

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