Steve Lin, owner of Land of Sushi, opens up shipments of fresh fish and live scallops every day in the kitchen. Behind the restaurant’s sushi bar, the chefs encase seafood morsels in specialty rolls such as the mango roll with spicy tuna and the uni roll with fresh sea urchin, creations that led to their being named Best Sushi Restaurant by Denver Westword in 2012 and 2013. Non-sushi dishes include 9-ounce new york strip steaks with teriyaki sauce and Alaskan halibut with miso glaze.
The executive chef here is one Ray Huy Hoang, and his sushi experience is extensive. Before he was rolling, slicing, and drizzling sauce at Sushi Mango, he spent 15 years sharpening his knives and skills at several other Japanese restaurants. Hoang's talents are so well known that he was commissioned to help out the Denver Art Museum. When CultureHaus threw a benefit for the establishment, they enlisted Hoang to create human sushi bars—nude models decorated with a smorgasbord of strategically arranged rolls and garnishes.
Sushi is a complex world of flavors, textures, and colors that may seem intimidating at first. Wasabi Sushi Bar’s spread of more than 90 rolls includes simple california and bluefin rolls for the sushi newbie as well as adventurous items for those delving deeper into the realm of maki.
Yellowfin tuna and cucumber slices fill the more simplistic rolls, and shrimp tempura and avocado cut the delicate brine flavor of barbecued eel in other offerings. The sushi chefs also liberally sprinkle a housemade tempura crunch topping at the sushi bar, and new york strip steaks crackle beneath spicy teriyaki sauces at the grill.
Inspired by the Hawaiian term hapa, which describes a harmonious blend of Asian and American cultures, the chefs at Hapa Sushi Grill & Sake Bar strive to balance dynamic flavors with every dish. They follow traditional Japanese techniques but incorporate influences from American, Hawaiian, and Japanese cuisine to fill their lunch and dinner menus with original combinations. Kalua pork peking wraps fold around Hawaiian-style pulled pork and the Poke Don coats fresh ahi tuna or salmon in a house poke sauce and sesame seeds. Sushi rolls range from basic california and shrimp tempura rolls to original creations, such as the XXX Roll, a core of tempura asparagus wrapped in hamachi and jalapeños, seared with olive oil, drizzled with ponzu, and played by Vin Diesel.
Each morning as the sun blossoms in the sky, chilled containers of fresh seafood arrive at Bara Sushi and Grill, causing chefs to smile in anticipation of the day’s creations. Lobster tail, salmon, and shrimp share space with unique sidekicks such as potato crunch, goat cheese, and mango in sushi rolls with names including The Big Lebowksi, Red Dragon, and Crouching Tiger. During midday hours, diners can ditch peanut-butter sandwiches for customizable lunchboxes, which can be filled with selections such as teriyaki chicken, veggie tempura, hall passes that never expire, and spicy tuna rolls.
The name means "taste" in Thai, and at Ghin Asian Blend & Sushi, flavor always comes first. Averse to calling their dishes "Asian fusion," the restaurant's chefs instead refer their genre as "Asian blend." They aim to bring the nuances of many cultures' kitchens seamlessly together on the same plates, creating meals that are as artful as they are satisfying. The tom yum soup, for instance, showcases a Thai- and Malaysian-style broth made from chili and fresh lime, whereas a spicy, Japanese tamari marinade brings the heat to the tropical-inspired tuna poke appetizer. Maki rolls display similar melding, matching spicy tuna with macadamia nuts and beef tataki with jalapeno. Even classic American dishes receive a global update—burgers are topped with sweet chili aioli, lamb chops are sauced with a ginger sake tamari reduction, and cuts of chicken are given their own delicious passports.
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