THERE’S almost as much drama at Aisuru Sushi than at the State Theatre around the corner.
Watching the adroit chefs prepare dishes in the open kitchen is sheer box office, and we became totally engrossed as flames leapt out the frying pan and beautiful sushi was rolled by the dozen.
Aisuru means to love in Japanese and I’m sure the artistic presentation of the dishes attested to the chef’s love of their work.
We were seated on the benches surrounding the bustling kitchen, and the first dish to arrive was a kirika roll ($12.50 for a sampler).
A bit like free-form sushi, the large cube of rice was topped with seared salmon and scallops, and finished of with a drizzle of Japanese mayonnaise, fish roe and spring onions.
The fish and scallops were soft and delicately flavoured and the roe salty and crunchy.
“It’s so fresh,” my mate exclaimed.
We hoed into a teriyaki tofu ($8.50) with equal relish.
Crisp on the outside, the tofu had a soft, moist centre and was perfectly balanced by the salty teriyaki sauce.
Last but not least was the soft-shell crab salad ($16): a large serve of lightly-battered crab was perched on mixed baby green salad and thinly sliced cabbage.
Our immediate neighbours, a young couple, raved about their seared beef nigiri ($14).
The hand-made sushi looked a picture and tasted “amazing”, they said.
Aisuru has a small but good wine list and a dry white ($10 a glass) was a great companion to the sundry flavours in our meal.
The dessert menu has just two dishes, a banana split ($12) and a green tea ice cream ($5).
We were too full and in too much of a hurry to go to the theatre to try them – but there’s always next time.
Corner William and James
open 7 days lunch and dinner
by JENNY D’ANGER