America’s love affair with this Japanese culinary art continues to grow. A sushi bar is a popular place to go for lunch or with the gang after work. Everyone has their special item that keeps them coming back for more. See who serves the best sushi in Orange County and plan your next meal at one of these great restaurants.
Taiko Fine Japanese Cuisine
14775 Jeffrey Road
Irvine, CA 92618
Taiko is a favorite spot for sushi in Orange County. Because it is a less traditional sushi establishment, the standard choice of California rolls is somewhat bland in comparison to the others. Taiko pushes the envelope with more unique offerings. Branch out from the norm and give a new roll a try. Specialty items like engawa (flounder), kanpachi (greater amberjack) and tobiko (flying fish roe) are all worth trying. Taiki is popular; you’ll often find a wait for dinner. But the prices and portions are good, the service is excellent and the traditional Japanese decor is pleasing.
San Shi Go
205 Main St
Newport Beach, CA 92661
For an unforgettable sushi adventure, you must go to San Shi Go. This place does not miss a beat in providing an exceptional experience. Some of the most raved-over dishes include the halibut sushi topped with fresh black truffle shavings, sweet shrimp (still swimming when you show up), red snapper sushi and the homemade marscapone cheese ice cream. San Shi Go gives you the whole package: incredible sushi, amazing side dishes, a helpful and doting staff, soothing ambiance and chefs you wish you could take home. To ensure a wonderful dining experience, sit at the sushi bar, order omakase (in other words, leave it up to the chef to choose) and don’t rush your meal.
3601 Jamboree Road
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Nana San’s sushi is noted for its freshness and quality, and the prices are quite reasonable for the quality of sushi. Nana serves fresh toro that melts in your mouth. The cuts of fish are generous and served with just a small amount of rice to highlight the real star of the show. The omakase experience at Nana San is fabulous. Some of the favorite selections are monk fish liver – smooth and not too bold; Hawaiian big eye tuna – very soft and tender; and the yellowtail belly – very clean tasting. At the end of your meal, try some orange jelly and a cup of hot green tea to cleanse your taste buds.
24351 Avenida De La Carlota
Laguna Hills, CA 92653
Ultra-fresh sushi and simple yet exquisite tastes are what set Kotobuki apart from the rest. Its presentation is elegant and exceptional in taste. Chef Hiro is a genius with salmon and tart juices, adding immense taste to sometimes bland fish. A must try is the mussels with the egg custard as well as the shrimp hand roll and cooked salmon hand roll. Any of these choices will provide a synopsis of what makes this spot one of OC’s best. You’ll be back before you know it.
Yama Sushi & Grill
27782 Vista Del Lago
Mission Viejo, CA 92692
Owner Don Lee chooses the best fish and creates all the custom sauces and jellies that accompany these already amazing delicacies. Some of the favorites are the tataki roll (rolled spicy tuna topped with seared tuna, white onion, cilantro and tataki sauce), samurai roll (crunchy shrimp wrapped in seaweed and topped with spicy tuna, eel sauce and spicy mayonnaise) and ahi poppers (deep-fried jalapeños stuffed with spicy tuna and cream cheese). The quality of the sushi is great and the fish is always fresh. Be sure and ask about the fish items that aren’t listed because you don’t want to miss out on any of the options.
A cooking enthusiast herself, writing about restaurants and sports bars in the the area is right up Sylvia Van Peebles’ alley. Sylvia informs readers about the best and most exciting events and venues in Orange County. She’ll keep you up-to-date on whats happening in the area. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.