Eater 38 Challenge: #9 Cafe Sushi

Valentine’s Day was a perfect day to make some progress on our Eater 38 challenge.  February 14th is notoriously a bad day for trying out a new restaurant. Expert opinions warn diners to stay home, but we didn’t listen and went out anyway! We dined at Cafe Sushi for a Valentine’s Day lunch, which was perfect timing because it was right before yet another blizzard in New England. To make things even more of a flurry, Ryan accidentally thought he had made the reservations for 1:30PM, but he actually made them for noon. Coincidentally, there happened to be a guy named “Ryan Butter” with a reservation at 2PM. The hostess thought that he was Ryan Butter and seated us right as we got there. Luckily, service died down by 2PM and Ryan Butter also got a table without any problems.

Cafe Sushi is a very casual place. Although sushi is always a treat to eat, probably not the best place to score some points on romance if you are trying to impress your boo. Read: No intimate, warm fuzzy, candle light decor here. Service as predicted was on the slow side. The server (as predicted) seemed unhappy. Such is life when one is working on a holiday meant to be spent with loved ones, but instead you are serving others. I am a resident, so I empathize with this dilemma. I am going to give the server the benefit of the doubt and bet that he would smile more and be more pleasant on another day.

We ordered the Chef’s Sushi Lunch, the Sashimi lunch, and the Sake 101 flight. The sake flight was probably the best part of the meal. It was fun to do a tasting of something that we are not very familiar with. Sake has such complexity! This was a great introduction to sake for us, and I have a feeling that sake may become one of our next obsessions/vices.

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Sake flight: Dewatsuru Kimoto, Minato, and Fukucho (from top to bottom, although they all look the same!)

Our meals came with a side of salad and miso soup, which were both well executed. The salad was so beautifully presented and perfectly seasoned. The soup was wonderfully balanced and was a soothing retreat from the New England cold.

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Side Salad

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Sashimi Lunch (left) and Chef’s Sushi Lunch (right)

The main courses though left something to be desired. They were both beautifully presented. The issue was I didn’t really know what I was eating because there was no description on the menu. I know what was tuna and salmon, and I think one was swordfish, but I’m not sure what the other proteins were! The rice was under-seasoned for my taste. I thought the chef’s sushi lunch was going to be a creative selection, but the fare was pretty standard and not too exciting. While it was affordable sushi, I am not sure if it was the best sushi in Boston as many claim it to be. I don’t have much experience with sushi in Boston, so I guess I’ll have to eat more and get back to you on that!

Another gripe of mine was that the restroom was in the back hallway of the restaurant, and I might as well have gone outside in the blizzard to do my business because that’s how cold the restroom was!

Decor: 2/5

Service: 2/5

Food: 3/5

Total rating: 2.33/5

Happy Belated Valentine’s Day! What did you do with your friends and/or partners?

-Lisa

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