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New Japanese restaurants


scarlet knight
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Four of us ate at Aozora in Montclair and were disappointed. I had to send the tuna back as it tasted old. The restaurant is beautiful, the service good but no one was impressed with the food.

My latest find is Mr Pi's in Metuchen. Excellent.

Rosalie Saferstein, aka "Rosie"

TABLE HOPPING WITH ROSIE

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Hmm... And where in Metuchen is Mr. Pi's, Rosie?

Our latest find of this sort is a new place in Skillman/Montgomery on Route 206 South called Yori, in the shopping center across the highway from Montgomery Center (which is where the theater is). Ken thinks the place used to be a breakfast/lunch joint, now it's beautifully renovated complete with piano and advertising live music (though not on the early Sunday we stopped in).

Cuisine is billed as Japanese/Korean/Chinese, but we didn't notice much Chinese. The Korean menu was particularly extensive, in two sections: one was a BBQ section, the other was written mostly in Korean.

On this first visit, a spur of the moment stop after an afternoon concert in Yardley, we opted for the sushi; which turned out to be cheaper than our local Sakura Sushi in Hilsborough. Ken had the spicy tuna (very spicy), salmon skin, and tuna and scallion (which was more tuna than scallion) - all rolls, all very good. I opted for the veggie side, with black mushroom (very tasty) and the standard asparagus and cucumber rolls.

We'll definitely be back to try other sections of the menu!

Edited by Helena Robinson (log)
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The former Osaka on US46E in Fairfield has reopened under a new name, haven't tried it yet. Adjacent to the Manheim Wholesale Auto Auction grounds.

There's also Soukerou in Singac, on NJ 23, haven't been there in years.

Apparently it's easier still to dictate the conversation and in effect, kill the conversation.

rancho gordo

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:cool: There's a new Japanese restaurant on Westfield on South Avenue called Fujiyama Mama. Despite its off-putting name, we loved the restaurant.I thlnk it :cool: will be a big hit. Very good food, nice decor, accomodating servers and moderately priced.

Has anyone else tried it yet?

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I'm not having too much success with Japanese restaurants this week. We walked into Samurai Sushi in Millburn last night. The place was packed and there were people waiting for tables. However, the restaurant had a nauseating fishy smell to me and we left. I've never been to a sushi restuarant that reeked of fish.

Rosalie Saferstein, aka "Rosie"

TABLE HOPPING WITH ROSIE

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We were at Samurai Sushi on Tuesday. No fish smell, but the place was quite crowded. The food was good, but expensive. If you want to whiff a fish smell go to nearby Sono or West Orange's Yoshi Sono. You would think that you are at the beach or an aquarium! Rosie, give Samurai another try on a weekday. On reflection about Aozora, the atmosphere and the service outshine the food. We will give it another try, since it's new. Has anyone tried Monster Sushi in Summit?

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Aozora in Montclair

this the place in Watchung Plaza? if so, I heard some good things but haven't tried it yet.

To answer my own question: no. The new place in Watchung Plaza is called Yoshi, also reviewed in today's NYT (Quick Bites, next to the Jerry's review). Anyone been?

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  • 1 year later...

I am writing this fairly quickly, so please forgive the grammatical and spelling mistakes in this.

Went to Aozora for lunch today. And boy, was it horrible. Really dreadful.... I ditto Rosie's comment about the Tuna, and would like to elaborate on the rest of my meal there....

I guess i shouldn't have expected too much. Knowing what sushi is usually like in NJ sushi joints, and especially those with a lot of hype around them, i shouldn't have expected too much. In this case though, I did. I sat at a table, feeling the need for some privacy. I proceeded to order the Omakase sushi for $22.00, in spite of it not being on their special lunch menu, which actually had some good prices. The omakase is described "explore the limits of our chef’s creativity with his personal selection of nigirisushi and makisushi." This sounds pretty interesting, I thought. For this kind of money, which is relatively high by NJ standards, I should be in for a pretty good meal. I was definitely wrong.

My platter consisted of 1.5 rolls and 6 pieces of sushi.

.5 roll -- this was cucumber roll. not my favorite. certainly not creative

1 roll -- this was inside out asparagus roll, topped with negi-toro. had the potential to be good, but in this case, toro was devoid of flavor.

Platter:

Squid – extremely chewy, not prepared properly. It was grilled slightly, adding a bit of char, but no flavor. There was this cloying plum-type sauce that was heavily dabbed in the middle of the piece. This is easily the worst piece of sushi I think I have ever had – ever. Sauce was terribly sweet and did not compliment the squid at all. Piece was extremely chewy. I couldn’t wait to swallow this piece.

Tuna – Tuna had a bit of sprouts on it. That’s it. Fish was not fresh tasting.

Salmon – Salmon was fishy tasting, and slightly slimy, indicating to me that it was old. Luckily, the chef doused the fish in eel sauce, masking the taste. The eel sauce itself wasn’t really that great, being overly thick and overly sweet. However, in this case I was glad he added it. Normally though, eel sauce on salmon doesn’t work for me, and isn't especially creative.

Yellowtail – This also had sprouts on it. Fish was moderately fresh tasting.

White Fish – What is there to say about white fish? It is in general not very exciting. This had some condiment which I can’t remember right now.

Shrimp – This was the cooked shrimp. Had some type of mayo underneath the rice. Not between the shrimp and the rice, but under the rice. Very strange preparation. I don’t like cooked shrimp as a sushi piece, and the mayo didn’t help it in this case.

In my humble opinion, this place doesn't deserve any hype at all. Maybe i'm being unfair by judging this place on just one visit - but there were so many misfires on my one plate, and the overall experience was just so bad, that I cannot bring myself to try it again. I really can't. I'd prefer to give my money to a place like Yoshi Sono, which although isn't trendy, or doesn't have the ambience, at least has palatable fish, nice selection, and reasonable prices. I will never recommend Aozora for sushi. The other stuff is another story - i have no idea how that stuff is...

Rob

p.s. There were two gentlemen seated at a neighboring table who, contrary to proper sushi etiquette, proceeded to cut each piece with a fork and knive, and then blanket each piece with pickled ginger, and then as if that wasn't enough, allowed each piece to bath in soy sauce for upwards of a minute. After trying Aozora's sushi, I wish i had done the same....

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There's a new-ish Sushi/Japanese place in Madison, which I forget the name, in the same shopping plaza with Gary's Wines, which Rachel and I ate at recently. Its Chinese-owned and was clean and attractive, and the fish was of excellent quality for a suburban sushi joint. Of particular interest is a HUGE appetizer menu and some interesting salad-type things, such as a Amaebi appetizer which was a huge pile of Amaebis (sweet shrimp) in a sort of light mayonnaisey-mustard-yuzu sauce over shredded daikon radish, which I liked a lot. They also have a section devoted to katsus as well as a section of spicy rolls. Their standard toro and other basic sashimi cuts were very good. We ate at the sushi bar, and the sushi guys were attentive and interactive.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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We tried Monster Sushi in Summit. It has a nice atmosphere, but I did not think that the sushi was particularly good. The rolls were too big to eat easily, Super white tuna sushi was tasteless, the salmon, not particularly flavorful.

Best recent sushi: Samurai in Millburn, old standby Sushihana in Montclair.

I have a feeling that there are places in NYC that are a lot better than NJ.

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I'm going to put in another plug for Nori in Caldwell (on Bloomfield Ave, up the hill from the intersection of Passaic and Bloomfield Aves--just after Sealfons). Although I only eat a few things when it comes to sushi, my friends love it all, and we keep going back to Nori. And it's BYO, which is also a nice bonus! :smile:

We also enjoy the sushi place in Morristown that's around the corner from the Community Theater; sorry, but I can't come up with the name at the moment.

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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There's a new-ish Sushi/Japanese place in Madison, which I forget the name, in the same shopping plaza with Gary's Wines, which Rachel and I ate at recently. Its Chinese-owned and was clean and attractive, and the fish was of excellent quality for a suburban sushi joint. Of particular interest is a HUGE appetizer menu and some interesting salad-type things, such as a Amaebi appetizer which was a huge pile of Amaebis (sweet shrimp) in a sort of light mayonnaisey-mustard-yuzu sauce over shredded daikon radish, which I liked a lot. They also have a section devoted to katsus as well as a section of spicy rolls. Their standard toro and other basic sashimi cuts were very good. We ate at the sushi bar, and the sushi guys were attentive and interactive.

Corrections:

  • 1) We were at the Livingston location of Gary's Wine (off Rt 10), not Madison.
    2) That location is not a Gary's Wine anymore, it is now called Wine Legend, but it doesn't look like they changed much about the store. Phone: (973) 992-4441 (
Here's a link to Gary's website).
3) The Japanese restaurant is Zen Japanese Cuisine, it was one of the best sushi experiences we've had recently. (Address: 277 Eisenhower Pkwy, Livingston, NJ 07039, Phone: (973) 533-6828)

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while taking my cat to the vet noticed a new place Tokyo House on Lakeside Blvd. in Mount Arlington. don't know if they are going to make it in this location- it was bubba's bbq which died after about a year. since i'm single tonight maybe i'll hit it up and see what they offer - besides i have a coupon. :laugh:

Nothing is better than frying in lard.

Nothing.  Do not quote me on this.

 

Linda Ellerbee

Take Big Bites

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Scarlett Knight - No, I did not have my meal sent back. To be completely honest, i'm not even really sure what the proper etiquette is with regards to sending a meal back.

In my mind, i would only probably send back a meal if there was something about it that was obvious to everyone that somthing was wrong (i.e. roach, mold, etc.)

It could be argued that perhaps my tastes were too demanding (i really don't think so), in which case I probably shouldn't be entitled to anything back. I've had similar quality fish at many places, but in this particular place, it was the combination of fish and the terrible sauces that were added to them that made this meal particularly bad.

I guess this is more of a warning than anything else to people who go to Aozora expecting a solid sushi meal.

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