Miami Foodie

Archive for the ‘Sushi’ Category

My favorite restaurants are usually not super trendy hotspots. My general impression is that hip clientele tend to eat no more a few morsels of appetizers and cocktails, and are not wholly concerned about the food, and would rather use their attendance as a calling card of coolness. As a result, the quality of the food never usually HAS to live up to the reputation of the Restaurant Brand, per say…

Sushi Samba Dromo Miami Bar - From Sushi Samba Website

Sushi Samba Dromo Miami Bar - From Sushi Samba Website


One would think that Sushi Samba on Lincoln Road could potentially fall into this category of trendsetter, but definitely not the case. Everything on the menu is FANTASTIC…. Sushi with a Latin American flair, a recipe perfect for hot Miami nights! The cocktails are originally exotic and deliciously tropical, but you can never go wrong with their classic Mojito or the cleverly named “Samba Juice”.

I was not exaggerating when I said that EVERYTHING on the menu is fantastic… The tempura is light, crispy, properly done and presented beautifully, and served with several dipping sauces, including a Miso, a Chimichurri and the classic tempura. Tasty, but personally, when I visit Sushi Samba, I try to stay away from the basic dishes, leaning towards culinary concoctions that cannot be found in local sushi joints. However, do try the Green Bean Tempura!

Outside of Sushi Samba Miami, *Image Sushi Samba Website

Outside of Sushi Samba Miami, *Image Sushi Samba Website

My favorite dish of the evening was the Yellowtail Seviche… fresh, cool yellowtail tossed in ginger, garlic and soy, topped with shredded radish. Thankfully, the shredded radish soaks up the remaining soy/ginger marinade, because it was so delicious I was tempted to drink it with a straw! (IM KIDDING! I only do that at home…)

The Seabass Miso Anticucho is INSANE! Soft, tender, perfectly cooked seabass in a tangy miso sauce… There are several layers of flavor in this dish, subtle and smooth in the beginning, and then a slightly tart, almost tangy but also smooth layer enters second with the miso. This is what I love about Sushi Samba, each dish has multiple layers of flavor that compliment each other perfectly, but in an unfamiliar way.

sushi samba pan steamed pork gyozas

sushi samba pan steamed pork gyozas

My favorite roll was the bobo Brazil… “seared kobe beef, avocado, kaiware, shiso, red onion and chimichurri ponzu”…. Complicated, flavorful, tender, multi-layered and delicious, just like a self-empowered woman, the bobo Brazil reminded me of a Beef Negamaki/California roll with chimichurri sauce. The roll was filling, but not too heavy or dense. Delish!

MIAMI FOODIE RATING: 5 OF 5 STARS

Sushi Samba Dromo
600 Lincoln Road
Miami Beach, FL 33139
Phone: 305.673.5337

Many great restaurants in Miami can be found in strip malls. Asaka Japanese Restaurant is no exception.
I pulled up to this tinted window establishment inside of a strip mall in Aventura, with my date. With raised eyebrows, and a held breath of doubt, I became slightly nervous, but all the more determined to prove him wrong.

Kani Crab-Sa - salad roll, with cucumber, crab, asparagus, rice wine dipping sauce.

Kani Crab-Sa - salad roll, with cucumber, crab, asparagus, rice wine dipping sauce.

Inside was a typical Japanese restaurant, but with low volume background house music, and about 8 patrons sitting at the Sushi bar, doing Sake shots with the Sushi chef… My kind of place!!

For starters we ordered the Kani Crab-Sa, a salad roll with PAPER thin cucumber wrapping chunks of immitation crab meat, and a slice of asparagus, served with a light rice vinegar dressing. The dish was light, tasty and refreshing, prefect for a hot summer Miami night. My only obvious recommendation was to replace the imitation crab with real whole chunks of crab meat.

Biscaya Roll - Yellow Tail, Tuna, Scallion Tempura, topped with Spicy Mayo and Eel Sauce

Biscaya Roll - Yellow Tail, Tuna, Scallion Tempura, topped with Spicy Mayo and Eel Sauce


My favorite rolls were the Biscaya roll and the Florida roll.

The Biscaya roll is large, heavy enough to constitute a full meal. Inside the roll consists of Tune & Yellowtail, rolled into rice, then dipped in scallion tempura, and topped iwth cpicy mayo and a sweet eel sauce. The outside is crisp, and the flavors dance together beautifully, almost addicting until the final piece remains. The roll would have been perfect, had it been cooked slightly less, so that the fish inside is still raw. Nevertheless, delicious and great quality sushi!

Florida Roll - Lobster, Lettuce, Avacado, Mayo Dressing

Florida Roll - Lobster, Lettuce, Avacado, Mayo Dressing

I also recommend the Florida Roll, the Floridian version of the Boston Roll, replacing the crab with Lobster. Refreshing, clean fresh lobster rolled with lettuce, avocado mayo is simple, yet satisfying, fulfilling anyone’s sushi crave.

Overall, the quality of the sushi was good, the service was friendly, and the vibe local. I would say better quality that Hiro’s, but not as extensive of a menu. If you are looking for a local sushi joint with quality sushi and not that long of a wait, this is a great place!

MIAMI FOODIE RATING: 3 of 5 stars!

Asaka Japanese Restaurant
20355 Biscayne Blvd
Miami, FL 33180
(305) 682-9331

Casual Sushi with a Miami Vice Vibe

Casual Sushi with a Miami Vice Vibe


After stressful days work, the only thing that can lift my spirits is stuffing my face with endless amounts of my favorite sushi rolls. On meltdown weeknights, Hiro in North Miami Beach is my saving grace. The place serves good sushi, stays open late, and has both a booze bar and a sushi bar, depending on how bad your day really was!
Eggplant with Miso Sauce

Eggplant with Miso Sauce

Their sushi is good quailty, not Sushi Samba, but perfect for a casual, relaxed night. Do not expect lavish dishes. If you order a dragon roll at Hiro, you are getting the basic dragon roll, cutie veggie cutouts or animal shaped ensembles not included.

Tuna California Roll and Salmon Roll

Tuna California Roll and Salmon Roll

I recommend the Yakitori skewers. Priced between $1.50 and $4.50 per skewer, you can choose your from grilled vegetables, meat and seafood, and combine it with your favorite Japanese dipping sauces. I prefer the grilled Zuccini, Mushrooms and Shrimp with the tempura dipping sauce.

Although the Shogayaki is misnamed, is delicious (a shogayaki is typically a pork dish, Hiro’s is an Eggplant with Miso Sauce) . The outside of the eggplant is grilled and crispy, and inside warm, soft and crumbling, topped with warm miso sauce, tangy, salty, and distinct. However, if you cannot handle too much sodium, I would avoid this dish.

If your are a vegetarian, or are one of the few who actually enjoy tofu (myself inclded)

A key note to remember, which I believe applies to Miami as a city; A Spicy Tuna, Spicy Salmon, or Spicy ANYTHING roll does not come with the usual spicy mayo as you may be accustomed to in New York… the Miami spicy version comes with a Kimchee sauce, which to me tastes like tobacco, and is just wrong. I get my “spicy mayo” fix by ordering a regular tuna roll with spicy mayo on the side.

Crab Shumai - Steamed

Crab Shumai - Steamed

I also recommend avoiding anything deep fried… that should go without saying, but if you want to completely ruin the taste of a dumpling, order it deep fried. The filling will be indistinguishable, and you will be chomping on charred dumpling dough. Stick with the steamed Shumai.

OVERALL RATING: 4 of 5 Stars!!
* Casual Dining Regular

Hiro
3007 Northeast 163rd Street
North Miami Beach, FL 33160
(305) 948-3687


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