Like camping bags, sushi rolls hold tempting edible contents and are a tight squeeze for bear couples that want to spoon. Eat with one eye open with today’s Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of sushi at Nori’s Lakeview location.
Sixteen rolls of sushi and 53 preparations of maki await taste buds at Nori, where chefs craft a menu of traditional Japanese appetizers, sashimi, and specialty teas. Patrons pass beneath sparkling chandeliers and secret agents disguised as chandeliers to take a seat at a table or the concrete-topped sushi bar, where culinary impresarios wrap up the spicy-tuna Fire Ball ($6), a hunger-incinerating blend of deep-fried spicy tuna augmented by a sweet sauce topping. The King California maki ($8) generates waves of mouth-watering flavors with layers of avocado, crabmeat, and masago, and the Chicago Crunchy Crazy ($15) takes its moniker from its blend of tempura crumbs, spicy mayo, tobikos, and the dance step popularized by Elliot Ness.
Like family picnics marked by passive-aggressive dish clearing, Nori accommodates and encourages BYOB dining—no corkage fee is charged for the first bottle of beer, wine, or sake, though each additional corking costs $7. For those who opt not to imbibe, sips of teas herbal, caffeinated, and decaffeinated help bring meals to a chest-warming close.
Though Nori sometimes features a discounted price online, this Groupon still offers the best deal available.
Nori Sushi Wicker Park
“Food can’t lie. If I tell you it’s good, but you taste it and it’s not good, it won’t be good,” says Nori’s owner. “If you make good food, it’s always successful.” This simple philosophy has led the owner and his staff to curate a creative menu of sushi, maki, and dinner platters. Inside, an open-air sushi bar offers glimpses of the chefs hand-rolling each selection, lavishing diners with a more entertaining culinary show than an all-snowcone production of The Iceman Cometh as they savor a variety of hot tea blends or sip on their own BYOB imbibables.