Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sushi Kiyono Date

Before a holiday weekend filled with long-lost San Francisco friends, the Fairfax flea market and 70's roller disco, Quinn took me out to a mellow sushi date at Beverly Hills' Sushi Kiyono. Smack dab in the middle of Beverly Drive, the restaurant serves sashimi, nigiri, and Los Angeles themed sushi with names like the Show Me The Money or The Godfather.

As a sushi novice, I had to research the difference between sashimi and nigiri, having tasted both throughout the past 2 years at Quinn's behest. While both are the delicate slices of raw fish that go down like butter, nigiri is served in a bigger cut atop white rice. I let the expert order for us, so we ended up with tuna and red snapper nigiri to start. 

Though I enjoy the nigiri, it still takes a little getting used to. In years past, the thought of eating raw fish always kept me away from eating sushi. Since falling in love with the rolls, I have grown more and more adventurous in what I'll try. It seems like I never go wrong with tuna, and the red snapper was soft and delicious. Quinn thought that they seasoned the nigiri too much though, and prefers the taste of the fish on its own.

(Sexy Dancer, Las Vegas Fever, Shrimp Tempura)

For our rolls we ordered 3 savory treats: Shrimp Tempura roll with asparagus (pictured above),  the Sexy Dancer roll, and the Las Vegas Fever roll. The shrimp tempura was my least favorite, mostly because I have come to the conclusion that I prefer my sushi with pink soy paper. I will of course still eat and relish in the taste of the roll, but the consistency of seaweed sometimes irks me. It was by no means unappetizing but I was fully distracted by the other two!

Both the Sexy Dancer and Las Vegas Fever rolls were wrapped in soy paper, cutting out the chewy texture of most seaweed rolls. The Sexy Dancer roll contained eel tempura and asparagus in a sticky-sweet eel sauce and the Las Vegas Fever roll, my favorite, was stuffed to the brim with shrimp tempura, spicy tuna and avocado. Despite my awkward inability to hold a pair of chopsticks for more than a few seconds, I powered through the meal without asking for a fork! 

Sushi Kiyono itself is much less flashy than other spots on Beverly Drive, and has an adorably friendly waitstaff. We sat at a small table in the front but other patrons perched themselves at the sushi bar to watch the chefs at work. Casual and affordable, Sushi Kiyono is a great spot to bring a date. (Thanks Quinn!)

Sushi Kiyono
255 South Beverly Drive 
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
(310) 205-3741


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