Naked Fish Japanese Bistro
in Downtown at 67 West 100 South is Salt Lake Magazine's
Japanese Restaurant of 2010. And there is little question why.
Naked Fish is undoubtedly my new favorite place for sushi in the City of Salt. It started when Manfriend, Ava, Erin and I walked through the doors into the beautifully decorated space. The website says the concept of Naked Fish is to serve contemporary Japanese cuisine in a swanky Downtown location. They definitely hit the mark.
The place feels very modern, comfortable and clean. The bathrooms are AWESOME! I want to take the sink, floors and walls and move them to my apartment. Seriously if there was a shower I would move in.
We didn't make a reservation so we missed out on the private omakase rooms, but our table was still comfortable.
We started off with some drinks. Ava and I ordered some cocktails. My Cosmo with champagne was a touch too sugary for it to be my favorite drink, but it was well made and yummy. Erin had a glass of wine that paired well with the sushi. And Manfriend tried a Japanese beer for the first time. Not surprisingly, the beer went best with the sushi, but that's not keeping me from more cocktails at Naked Fish in the future.
The sushi rolls are between $7 and $12. One roll was plenty for me--so Naked Fish can be done cheaply. But it was Ava's birthday so we splurged.
These were hands down the best sushi rolls I have eaten. Ava ordered the caterpillar roll and loved it. I don't remember what roll Erin ordered, but I believe it was the tekka maki roll. It was also outstanding. I ordered a stand-by favorite of mine, the Wasatch roll. I was very impressed with the freshness of the ingredients, the solid construction and the great mix of flavors. Manfriend ordered the Mexi roll, while the flavor was great it was too hot for me, and I barely made it through one piece with a glass of water.
At this point, I had deiced Naked Fish is the BEST. JAPANESE. BISTRO. EVER. Manfriend disagreed. He insisted the mark of a good Japanese restaurant is in the vegetable tempura. He disagreed with Ava and said Tsunami was better. So of course, I had to take him up on the challenge. And I promptly ordered the vegetable tempura.
Oh.My.God. It was amazing! The asparagus, bell peppers, onions, mushrooms and Japanese squash were all cooked perfectly. The tempura batter itself was crisp, light and delicious. The sauce on the side was also wonderful and went fantastic with each vegetable. Although I can't even begin to guess what was in it.
After the vegetable tempura, Manfriend acquiesced and agreed Naked Fish is the best Japanese restaurant in Salt Lake City. And that was before the ice cream.
The waitress suggested mochi ice cream for dessert. We had the plum and green tea ice cream rolled in mochi. (I'm not sure what mochi is, but I think it's a red bean paste.) I love, love green tea ice cream. It was the perfect dessert to end such a wonderful meal.
I can't wait to return to Naked Fish. And this time I'm making a reservation.
Labels: downtown, food, japanese, naked fish, sushi