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3125 Esplanade Ave. (Ponce de Leon St.) Send to Phone
Fish may not be Sushi Café's strength, but the Hawaiian chef makes up for it with a sunny disposition and island-inspired specialties.

Lunch Tues.-Sat., Dinner Tues.-Sun.

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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Sushi Cafe Restaurant Review

: Sushi Café's sushi card looks like any other sushi card in New Orleans, with a standard fish-over-rice selection and rolls named for the city's neighborhoods. But the other menu---the one listing the Hawaiian chef, Victor Pasigan's, specialties---is extraordinarily original. Hamachi Dice involves carpaccio-thin slices of the Japanese fish, along with a fruity soy sauce and tiny cubes of red bell and jalapeño peppers. The latter acts like a fruit, blossoming in unexpected sweetness beside the rich fish. Pasigan is an entertainer, more rock star line cook than Zen master, and he'll feed you what he likes if you're willing to hand over the reigns. The downside is that Sushi Café's fish is not top-quality. Nothing tastes rank or old, but ruby-red tuna was mealy and other fish taste hollow of flavor. Don't care to risk it? Try the buttered spicy edamame, followed by a sublime cha-soba soup in which the forest-colored noodles are made from green tea powder. Resembling a home with a lamp lit in every window, Sushi Café is a BYOB affair; half a block up Esplanade Avenue, Whole Foods Market carries several Japanese beers and sakés far below restaurant prices.


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