Imagine you are hungry, specifically for fish. Do you really have time to wait around for fish to be cooked when you could simply encase it in a luxurious cylinder of rice and call it dinnertime? Today's Groupon serves the sea's friskiest foodstuffs raw in a rolling rice roll rolled right into your pearlynets: for $20, you get $40 worth of sushi, sake, and Japanese cuisine at Japon Bistro, the Pasadena eatery that Citysearch named one of the Best LA Sushi Restaurants in 2007 and Zagat rated "very good to excellent."
Japon Bistro's menu of sushi and small plates has traditional favorites and innovative small dishes. Try modern flavors such as chawan mushi, a savory seafood custard ($7), or stick to staples such as sunomono (cucumber and seaweed in sweet vinegar, $4) and fried tofu in dashi broth ($6). Los Angeles Magazine recommends Japon Bistro's imaginative sushi concoctions (fish is always market fresh). The chirashi sushi plate will get you tuna, yellowtail, salmon, albacore, whitefish, Japanese mackerel, surf clam, shrimp, and egg for $22 (all types of sushi are known to be good food to eat when you're hungry). Japon Bistro also has vegetarian options.
Japon Bistro is renowned for its premier sake selection, which features more than 10 types of rice wine. Start with the rich, ripe-orange flavor of Oni No Shitaburui (Honjozo) for a small serving at $9 or the mild and fruity taste of Ichinokura (Junmai) for $10. If you can't decide where to go from there, ask for a recommendation. One of Japon Bistro's attentive, knowledgeable servers will be happy to guide you and your table of friends through the labyrinth of sake so that you never once encounter David Bowie and his way-too-tight pants.
Japon Bistro is closed for dinner on Mondays.
- Delicately translucent sushi joins up with a bounty of imaginative small plates and an ample sake selection at this unassuming Japanese [sic] that devotees deem an amazing find in Pasadena; service is attentive, so trust the staff with recommendations or allow the chef to guide you through one of three different omakase options. – Zagat
- This stylish little dining room attracts a diverse clientele, from multigenerational Japanese families to artsy couples. Owner Koji hits the fish market most days, and his chefs create imaginative sushi concoctions… – Los Angeles Magazine
- Unheralded Japon Bistro is a pleasant discovery, offering a menu of contemporary Japanese dishes and deftly prepared sushi dispensed from a sturdy, polished wood bar. – Gayot
- I am somewhat of a sushi snob, and I have to say that this is fresh! The service was wonderful, and the atmosphere was inviting. – callisto222, Citysearch
- We were blown away by this restaurant last night. The sushi was spectacular as was the service. Everything was top notch. The only place I've had sushi as good cost about 250 dollars a person. – brad067, Citysearch
Fresh, flavorful sushi is only half of the story at Japon Bistro. The other? Carefully paired pours from an artisan assortment of sake, stocked by owner and sake expert Clarence Wong, also known as Koji. His seasonal selections complement unique rolls, such as the spicy, jalapeno and-salmon-filled Southwest, or the New Age, featuring tuna, salmon, and albacore topped with a secret-recipe sauce. A selection of noodles and teriyaki entrees satisfy diners who prefer their raw food cooked. The drinks and dishes unite to create a dining experience that has won a recommendation from the Michelin Guide, and been named amongst the area's best by Citysearch.com and Pasadena Magazine.