Dining Out: Asuka Sushi & Teriyaki

Not only is Asuka Sushi and Teriyaki first-rate, this is one of the increasing number of small restaurants on K Street downtown that are staying open into the evening – something that is becoming more common in the blocks between 9th and 11th.

This restaurant used to be called Taiko, but it changed its name and ownership a year ago. The food hasn’t changed, however: It’s still good, even elaborate, and the varied menu has something for everyone.

Lunch specials – such as teriyaki chicken and veggies – typically go for $6.95. A variety of house rolls range from $4.95 for the California Roll to $7.49 for the Spicy Tuna and Green Onion Roll. In between those prices, you’ll find Kappa Maki (cucumber), Hamachi Maki (tuna) and the California Supreme (snow crab and avocado).

For the more adventurous – and if you’re down at K Street at night, you’re probably already adventurous – there’s the spectacular Chirashi (mixed sashimi over sushi rice) for $15.95. It’s a keeper. There’s the Sashimi Deluxe for $19.95, but it’s plenty for two: It’s an array of 16 pieces of fresh sliced fish served with rice. There’s also a combo platter of Sushi and Sashimi for $19.95, the chef’s choice of five pieces of sushi and six of sashimi.

The highest-priced items on the menu are the big platters, the party trays that feed four or five – or more. They go for $50 each. One called the Baker’s Favorite includes all cooked sushi items, such as Bay Scallops,  and Son Gok. Another, called The Hotties, includes Rakuso, Spicy Tuna and a smothering of wasabi. Try that one on a summer’s day. You’ll sweat enough to lose weight even as you eat.

There are 28 specialty rolls, including Tiger Prawns, the Sea Steak Roll, Tempura Crumb Cakes (yummy) and something called the Samurai, which is avocado, hamchi, green onion and spicy mayonnaise. The specialty rolls run from about $8.95 to $11.95. Bento boxes are less than $9, and include beef, chicken and salmon teriyaki, as well as sesame chicken.
I’m not a fan of tofu mixed into vegetables, but when you toss in hot Japanese noodles, I’m there. Try it, for $7.95.

They do take-out and catering, and accept reservations after 2 p.m. for five people or more.

Asuka Sushi & Teriyaki
1021 K Street
Mon-Fri: 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sat: Noon-8 p.m. Closed Sun
916 446-3663

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