Maru's distinct pan-Asian cuisine blends Japanese and Korean cuisine into tapas-style dining and elaborate sushi rolls. Amid deep crimson walls and rich mahogany woods, diners tuck into Korean short ribs or marinated bulgogi?thin-sliced rib-eye steak?as chopsticks conduct Japanese flavor symphonies of miso-marinated pork belly and char-broiled squid drizzled in sweet ginger sauce. Omakase-style dining gives culinary adventurers a chance to tour the chef's favorite new creations, sampling their way through an off-menu spread of sushi. Alternatively, guests can delight in the bistro's complex sushi mainstays, such as the Maru roll, stuffed with crab and cream cheese, topped with spicy tuna, and christened with crispy spires of sliced lotus root. The sushi bar also slices its own tapas dishes, slinging shareable plates of yellowtail with organic microgreens, jalapeño, and ponzu, or cuts of spicy tuna and avocado served on lotus-root chips.
Archira Thai and Sushi's kitchen staff boasts several Thailand natives, who dedicate their efforts to reflecting the modern, 21st century culinary offerings of Thailand and Southeast Asia. An extensive menu sports classics such as pad thai, where stir fried rice noodles set the stage for an ensemble cast of chicken, bean sprouts, egg, peppered Nathan Lane, and crushed, roasted peanuts ($12). Archira's crispy duckling layers a crispy, honey-roasted bird atop a vegetal bed of bell pepper, onion, carrot, and fresh basil glazed with a sautéed garlic chili sauce ($18). Cast a net around the caterpillar roll—a tightly wrapped union of eel and cucumber with avocado, shrimp, and unagi sauce ($12). The spider roll catches unsuspecting tongues in its web of soft-shell crab and avocado ($11).
With consummate showmanship, hibachi chefs grill lobster tails and shrimp in front of guests in Ginza Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar’s modern dining room. Flames from the hibachi grill gleam off black tabletops surrounded by chairs arranged in a U-shape. Behind the sushi bar, chefs prepare california rolls alongside specialties such as the Mayflower, whose spicy tuna and fish eggs evoke the sea life that pilgrims used to catch by hand and throw at trees they suspected of practicing witchcraft. In the kitchen, cooks craft more traditional dishes such as chicken and salmon glazed in teriyaki sauce or veggies and shrimp fried tempura-style.
Asuka's delightfully diverse menu rolls out sushi classics alongside juicy steaks, hearty pastas, and tender seafood brimming with Asian flavors. Dig into panko-breaded don katsu—chicken or pork cutlets deep-fried to juicy crispness ($15)—or put a pile of chopsticks on the table and play pick-up sticks to determine who gets the first slice of a dragon roll ($11.95) or a rainbow roll ($9.95). The garlic teriyaki tuna ($17.95) keeps senses floating on seaside flavor clouds, and the bulgogi don buoys a convoy of potato noodles, thin beef slices, mushrooms, and veggies in a sweet soy broth ($16).
Taste of Asia's menu focuses on Japanese cuisine, with the occasional sprinkle of Thai influence. The grill sizzles beneath slabs of miso salmon, hibachi dishes, or chicken teriyaki, while bubbling fryers help coat shrimp tempura in a crisp outer layer. Sushi chefs combine a variety of piscine elements to create sushi such as the 12-piece Earthquake roll, which tops a core of spicy salmon with a trio of tuna, whitefish, and avocado on top.
Patrons can gather around regular tables or at traditional low tables where diners sit cross-legged or kneel during their meal, which makes it easier to knight each other with chopsticks. As the relaxing powers of sake cocktails set in, diners can gaze upon a screen painted with kimono-wearing women or a TV at the bar.