Tuesday, May 13, 2008

What's in a name? Part 2: Sushi Saurus rocks!

**UPDATE (April 2009): Sushi Saurus was closed for several months as it underwent new ownership and remodeling. It's now open again. To read a new review, click here. **
I'm willing to admit when I made a mistake. And in this case, I was definitely wrong in judging by the name.

I checked out Sushi Saurus, and it was VERY good - much better than Sushi Island in quality. Just look at the seabass sashimi in the photo above - beautiful, isn't it? And the flavor and cut were sublime.

As Yelpers indicated, Sushi Saurus is an authentic place and more focused on the traditional basics than I thought. Yes, there's a long list of rolls, too (including a couple with strange names like Dr. Seuss, and Stinky Roll, which utilizes a gelato-sized scoop of garlic butter - yikes!), but the sushi chefs are Japanese and the nigiri and sashimi I enjoyed confirm the quality of the fish.
It's a basic sushi place, still not on the same level as the exquisite places I've raved about in earlier posts, but the quality is very good for the reasonable prices (about $4 for a typical nigiri order).

Exhibit B: The lovely, buttery yellowtail:

And compare the unagi with the eel nuggets we got at overpriced 242 in Laguna:
Plus, the small place in busy Belmont Shore is fairly quiet, not a "rock 'n' roll sushi" kinda place, and the sake menu is good, too.

To top it off, here's what the sushi chef told us about the name: The owner's young son (elementary-school age, according to our chef), commented on how the sloped shape of nigiri sushi looks like a dinosaur's back.

How cute is that?

So I'm literally eating my words - and enjoying it, happy to have found a reasonable, quality, comfortable place near home.

Sushi Saurus is proof, once again, that I should never assume - a motto I try to live by, but occasionally slip on - and judge anything or anyone by the name.

Thanks, Dan, for the additional encouragement to give Sushi Saurus a chance!

And Lisa, I'm even willing to try Sushi Plantation ... though I'm not as encouraged by the Yelp reviews; all the 5-star raves remind me of those for Tuna Town (which I still have no desire - or need! - to try) and for Sushi Studio, praising the rolls and not commenting knowledgably about the fish itself.

Stay tuned ...

Sushi Saurus, 5260 E. 2nd St., Long Beach, CA 90803. (562) 439-1950

1 comment:

  1. Sushi Saurus is a pretty lame name, but 30 years from now the owners will be able to explain the history of the name and it'll be cool. It will also be a "period" restaurant - sort of how you might guess a person's age by their name: think Ruth and Britney; Thomas and Nick. Didn't we just pass the dinosaur craze?