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tetsujustin

[HOU] Soma

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Robert Gadsby, late of NOE and his chef de cuisine, former pastry chef at noe, Plinio Sandalio have opened up Soma Sushi on the corner Washington and Sheperd. Looking at Plinio's blog, his desserts look really exciting. Very Alex Stupak-esque (of WD~50.) The backers are the people who own all the Azumas.

First, has anyone been?

Second, not that I really pay all that much attention to the opinions of (because they more often than not, aren't very accurate) but the three current reviews of Soma on b4-u-eat aren't all that favorable. Given that this place has probably been only open for a week or two, but it seems as if people are overlooking the hot food in favor of the sushi rolls etc... could it be because they have the word sushi in their name? With Chef Gadsby's background, that would mean the food he's strongest in, which is his composed plates, might be underordered.

The whole buzz surrounding this place reminds me of Rickshaw when it opened. Not sure if that's a good or bad thing, and Chef Sandalio I believe is a Rickshaw alum.

Otherwise, the aspect of having these two on Washington is pretty exciting. I look forward to trying it out when I get the chance.

Thoughts?

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If they want to highlight cooked food then sushi in the name is a very bad idea IMO. Gadsby is a pretty creative chef so having a limiting name will really limit what people think of and order at restaurant.

The place is a couple blocks from my office so I will give it a shot soon.

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justin,

have you made it out to soma yet? thoughts? i'm very curious as alison cook's review of soma last week was a lot more favorable than my own here back in january.

although yellowtail belly and salmon belly seemed to be permanent items on their sushi menu, they have some issues with the quality of most of their sushi which i'm not ready to forgive them for.


"Our lives are not in the lap of the gods, but in the lap of our cooks."

-Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living, 1937

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I've been twice, and though I don't think its in any way a bad restaurant, I don't think I would go back on my dime because the food quickly adds up and it just doesn't justify it to what I want to spend for what I'm looking for. Plus service was poor but forgivable one time, and abysmal the next.

Food-wise, some of it's pretty good, but a lot of it just sounds better on the menu than what actually comes out. The fish and chips I was greatly anticipating came out underseasoned the one time I ordered it and dry the second time my friend ordered it. Sushi was decent, but I'd heard from somewhere that they had boasted fish flown in from the tsjuki market in Japan, and having been there this past winter, I'd be inclined to either day they got the ends of the pickings, or it wasn't from Japan because the selection wasn't great, nor did it taste pristinely fresh.

The one thing I just don't like, though it's absolutely just a personal preferance of mine, is the high glitz factor of the food and place. At this point in my life, I like well flavored, well composed restaurants that don't need to be flashy or sound elitist, but with the use of micro greens everywhere they shouldn't be, l'atelier de soma written on the menu, the waiters telling me how I should eat the food, I felt like I was under a microscope. And it didn't even feel comfortably under the microscope like some restaurants can manage to finangle in NY or Chicago or SF, like awkwardly under the microscope.

Either way, the atmosphere is clubby, the food is okay to good, and the service didn't quite impress.

That's my thought.

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