Flashing knives and spurting flames dazzle diners as the chefs at Kuma Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar theatrically sear entrees on the tabletop hibachi grills. Equally comfortable with cooking vegetables and meats, the chefs can shuffle a number of them across the grill's iron surface, including scallops, chicken, or filet mignon. Meanwhile, the sushi chefs gingerly slice pieces of fresh salmon and tuna behind their bar—unlike traditional bartenders, who rarely slice bottles into neat sections. Their work does not stop there, however, because they also carefully layer orders of salmon nigiri that can emerge alongside a familiar or inventive sushi roll, which arrives in either six or eight bite-sized pieces.
Within the cozy confines of Thai & Sushi's scarlet-walled eatery, taste buds can surf the fusion of flavors surging through a menu teeming with traditional Thai dishes and Japanese-style sushi platters. Tuna, salmon, shrimp, crab, and masago snuggle in a blanket of avocado and soy nori bedded down in the pineapple-slathered Hawaiian roll ($11.95). Olympic-medaled vegetable rolls lithely springboard from a platform of cucumber, avocado, asparagus, inari, and shiitake mushrooms into awaiting mouth caverns ($8) and pad thai chicken roosts in a spicy nest of rice noodles ($9.75). The sweet aroma of fresh ginger mingles with the sizzling serenade of chicken, beef, or pork and a garden-torn quartet of onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, and expatriated lawn gnomes ($9.95).
Flame-kissed entrees and composed sushi adorn diners' plates at Eenoco Japanese Steak & Sushi and a selection of sake and Japanese beers keeps thirsts at bay. Hibachi stations allow dexterous chefs to impress guests with a dazzling display of teppanyaki skills and mental long division as they portion such fiery delights as chicken teriyaki ($13) according to the crowd's thunderous applause. Brimming with surf-fresh catches, chefs behind the sushi bar carefully layer cuts of fish atop ricey pillows to create ranks and files of nigiri ($3.25+ for two pieces) and bind rice around a protein-laden core of spicy tuna, white tuna, and seared tuna alongside avocado and spicy mayo to form the Tuna Tornado maki ($12). Lunchtime menus in Eatonton and Madison muscle aside midday hunger pangs, enlisting the appetite-sating heft of the spicy tuna burger, which heaps avocado and spicy mayo atop a fused frankenpatty of steak and spicy tuna ($8).
Zuma Sushi & Sake Bar's chefs slice ocean-fresh seafood before hungry eyes at an open bar, spotlighting the skill necessary to create artfully innovative and traditional sushi preparations. With the freshest, suntan-free fish, the team arranges sushi, maki, and sashimi on plates, constructing aesthetically mesmerizing meals that edify palates and inspire patrons to hang a frame around their mouth in anticipation. Creativity abounds in distinctive maki creations such as the bagel roll, which brims with smoked salmon, cream cheese, and avocado, and chefs demonstrate their knowledge of the tried and true with a classic salmon roll. Throughout their meal, guests can complement the Eastern flavors rolling across their tongue with sips of hot and cold sake, sights of paper lanterns hanging over dining room, and translation of the characters painted on the walls. Guests also lunch all-you-can-eat sushi for $15.
Mali Restaurant offers menus of fresh sushi and traditional Thai fare in a warm, chic setting. Lunchtime diners can sample starters such as the customer favorite basil rolls filled with homemade barbecued pork, shrimp, noodles, and vegetables, served with dip-encouraging tamarind sauce ($5). Make it a seasoning motif with a main course of Chinese eggplant with basil, sautéed with onion and pepper in a spicy basil sauce ($8). Dinner partakers can wake drowsing taste buds with an appetizer of satay marinated in Thai herbs and curry powder ($9) or nosh on sushi selections such as the hole-free bagel roll filled with smoked salmon, cream cheese, and scallion ($6.50). Entrees include classic noodle dishes as well as mouth-watering meats such as the grilled duck breast with red curry, bedecked with pineapple, peach, and vegetables ($16). Yowling sweet teeth can be silenced with a dessert of fried banana with coconut ice cream ($7), while of-age appetites can be sated with a quaff such as the restaurant's own Thai tea-ni ($8), a blend of tea-infused and vanilla vodkas, sweetened Thai tea, and milk, sure to whet whistles and inspire whistles and soft-shoe routines of admiration.
Chef Reza, head honcho in the kitchen of Gekko Sushi, weaves scrumptious slivers of fresh ingredients into artistically plated sushi and traditional dinner and lunch selections. Bask in the romantic luster of the sunset specialty roll, spicy crab salad wrapped in salmon and lemon ($11), or ignite palates with a jalapeño-laden Mexican roll brimming with shrimp tempura, crab, and cooling avocado ($8). The chef also crafts terrestrial dinner specials, such as lightly battered duck in a basil-infused sauce ($18). During lunch, diners can hone decision-making skills by addressing lingering marriage proposals or selecting one of many bento boxes framing proteins, such as spicy pork with rice ($9), served alongside a quartet of side dishes. Decadent desserts such as tempura-battered cheesecake ($6) end meals on a sweet note with treats.