With help from their sons, friends, and colleagues, lifelong restaurateurs Rob and Kelly Kukura opened 95a Bistro & Sushi in 2011, winning nearly instant acclaim from Boulder Magazine. The menu draws inspiration from Latin, Mediterranean, and Asian cuisines, showcasing hot and cold tapas such as bacon-wrapped dates and beef carpaccio along with entrees of brie-covered vegetable gnocchi and scottish salmon flavored with smoked-paprika brown butter. Their wide selection of sashimi and nigiri-style sushi includes the Firecracker specialty roll, whose fillings of citrus-aioli-topped crunchy tuna can be heard all the way down the street. The restaurant serves its brunches, lunches, and dinners both inside and on a seasonal outdoor patio overlooking a sprawling lawn.
Kira Sushi chefs bring years of experience to crafting specialty maki and handrolls, and insist on using only the freshest ingredients to complete each roll. The menu encompasses more than 30 types of sushis and more than 60 types of rolls. Lobster salad and spicy tuna pair with seaweed salad and crab meat to make the Disney, one of the restaurant's trademark specialty rolls. Fresh sashimi, teriyaki, and noodle dishes complete the eatery's offerings of tasty Japanese dishes.
In order to consistently impress guests, the chefs at Hana Matsuri work closely with fish markets to procure the freshest seafood for their sashimi, nigiri, and maki creations. Once their grocery baskets are filled, they head to the kitchen to start rolling rice around interesting ingredient combinations such as the Hamachi Orange roll's mix of spicy shredded yellowtail, orange wedges, masago, jalapeño, and mango sauce. Beyond the sushi bar, the chefs create an array of hotter Japanese dishes—including steaming udon soups and teriyaki meats—for lunch and dinner.
"ZEN," reads the letters attached to the dining room's wall. Calming green walls and the occasional potted tree serve as soothing design elements. Modern hanging lamps float above diners' heads, suspended from the matte-gray piping that lends the dining room a subtly industrial-chic look. It’s in this invigorating space that diners get excited about the memorable culinary quests they’re about to embark on. One end of the room is striped with a sushi bar, but patrons can also order rice-swaddled fillets at their tables. Those looking to snap up something different peruse a more general menu influenced by Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese, and Japanese cuisine.
At Ooka Sushi, the chefs satisfy practically any Asian-cuisine craving, not just those for artfully prepared and presented sushi and sashimi. They also slow cook broccoli and bell peppers in a thick Thai peanut curry, marinate duck meat in Chinese fire spices and fry it to a golden crisp, and deep fry shrimp in tempura batter.
Upon walking through the doors of the softly lit eatery, guests are faced with a classic frenchman’s dilemma. Turn left, and they’ll find themselves in the Canton Palace half of the restaurant; turn right, and they’ll enter Osaka Hibachi territory. The former specializes in authentic dishes from across Asia—Vietnamese rice bowls with tender shrimp and chicken, nutty Thai noodles, and sizzling Sichuan hot pots. It is staffed by a team of attentive servers, who bustle about the bright space, refilling wine glasses and taking note of special dietary concerns, such as a sensitivity to spicy chilies or bread that was baked using lightning.
The Osaka Hibachi section of the restaurant features an entirely different menu from its pan-Asian sister, with a focus on Japanese hibachi-style dinners. Here, chefs sizzle up fine steaks and fresh seafood on fiery tableside grills as diners watch, entranced by roaring flames and flipping spatulas.