Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Kyoto Sushi

2534 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL 60614
Kyoto Sushi on Urbanspoon

A Quick Word:
I always think finding a great sushi place is hard to do.  Once again, this place is pretty good in some aspects, but definitely misses on others.  The rolls can be hit or miss for sure.  The location is sort of strange... it is in the garden floor or basement of a building in lincoln park.  It is very dark and crowded.  I will say though, they are home to a creative roll that I really enjoy.  But it still isn't enough to bring it above average.  A 2.5 mile rating fits well.

What I ate:

Oyster Shooters

A great way to start off a meal... Fresh chilled oyster with a raw quail egg, lemon, soy sauce, and some hot sauce! It is served in a champagne glass and meant to be eaten all in one bite.  You can really taste the oyster and the different sauces.  The quail egg gives it an added richness.  I suggest ordering one or two per person!

Miami Roll

This roll is one of my favorites everywhere.  I know its not typical sushi, but tempura frying a roll always hits the spot.  This rolls is filled with shrimp, crab, cucumber, masago, and cream cheese... it is then tempura battered and deep fried and topped with a spicy mayo.  Eat it quickly while the cream cheese is still melted and wow the flavors are intense.  Unfortunately, I think the creaminess overpowers everything so that the rest of the ingredients are essentially useless. They also add way too much spicy mayo.  There is no point in adding all the other ingredients with all that mayo.  Lighten up on something.

Creamy Roll

Without question one of my favorite rolls!  It is filled with shrimp tempura, unagi, sweet crab, masago, and mayo and the best part about it is that instead of being held together by seaweed, it is wrapped entirely in thin slices of AVOCADO!  For a little texture change, it is topped with tempura crunch and masago and for sweetness, a little unagi sauce is added.  The creaminess is out of this world... I have never found a roll similar to this one and I can understand why it is considered one of Kyoto's specialties and most popular rolls.  A MUST TRY ROLL!!!

Orange Sunset Roll and Fireball Roll

Orange Sunset Roll - Shrimp tempura, sweet crab, avocado, ginger mayo, and topped with salmon, orange slices and tobiko.

Fireball Roll - Unagi, avocado, spicy tuna, jalapeño, and truffle oil topped with tempura crunch, chili oil, unagi sauce, and wasabi tobiko.

Overall these two rolls were just subpar.  I was a disappointed because there were actually too many ingredients and too many flavors going on.  It looks amazing from reading the list, but it suffers from being too complex.  The Orange Sunset Roll was more refreshing because of the orange slices, but the shrimp tempura and crab are all lost under the stronger ginger and salmon tastes.  I haven't seen too many restaurants with this combination, and I now understand why.  The Fireball Roll suffered from being topped with truffle oil.  That oil is very strongly flavored and this overpowers even the sweet unagi and the spicy chili oil.  I do wish the rolls were simpler, but that could be our fault for choosing them.

The DOs/DON'Ts:
- Order some of the appetizers.  They do a great job with them
- Share rolls!  This way you can try a lot of different rolls and get a sense of which is better!  Also, the rolls are much bigger than some places so sharing is better!
- Ask for extra ginger... It can be used for palate cleansing before switching rolls!
- Do look at Groupon for a deal... I have been here multiple times with groupons which definitely helps out the wallet!

- Don't drive here... parking is insane to find.
- Don't choose rolls that have 10000 items inside... I did, and it was a mistake.  Definitely try the more simpler ones if you enjoy sushi, but if its first time then go ahead and try the complex ones with tons of flavors.

How far would I walk for this food?

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