Break out the chopsticks, or better yet, just use your hands. Wednesday marks National Sushi Day and Yelp search results have turned up some of the most fantastic flights of fish in north San Diego. Just say “omakase” and leave the sushi to the local pros.
Kaito Sushi (Encinitas)
Reservations are recommended for this popular locals joint and Yelpers report it’s open only for dinner, maxing out around 40 seats. The chefs behind the counter create stunning and tasty items with the freshest of catches. Specials can be noted on the eatery’s Facebook page. A few weeks ago the list featured Kamasu (barracuda), Kohada (gizzard shad) and Anago (salt water eel).
Hana Sushi (Temecula)
Happy Hour at Hana boasts hand rolls for about $5, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. every day. Chef Jake puts perfect Ono, Hirame (halibut), Ebi (shrimp) and Tai (red snapper) in front of his guests’ daily – and he doesn’t just do this live. The chef also makes handy, how-to videos on his YouTube channel, revealing recipe details for some of his signature dishes like the Moon River Roll or the Golden Hana.
Sushi Huku (San Marcos)
Huku is Japanese means “happiness” and we’re thrilled this sushi spot is open for both lunch and dinner. Snag an FM Roll, made with teriyaki steak and avocado on top of a Lobster Roll, or the Golden Dragon, fresh salmon on top of a California Roll. The sashimi list is extensive and features Cajun tuna and giant clams, and if you have to get back to the office, they offer the whole menu for take-out, too.
Blue Ocean Robata and Sushi Bar (Carlsbad)
“Robata” means cooking around the hearth and the practices in place here reflect those ancient traditions. In addition to the vast sushi offerings, this place uses hardwood charcoal to create awesome skewered menu items. Work your way through more than 20 different sashimi options ranging from Toro to Maguro, and make sure you try the Padres Roll: tempura shrimp, crab and cucumber topped with avocado, green onion, soft shelled crab, spicy mayo and eel sauce.
Sushi N’ Joy (Oceanside)
Reviewers rave about the portion sizes and the absolute freshness placed on their plates: Sushi joy? Absolutely! It’s an unassuming location with fantastic service and all of your favorites: octopus, markel, smelt eggs, shrimp and a huge selection of unique special rolls created by the chef. If you can’t decide, order the combos. The “Osaka” comes with 10 pieces of assorted sushi and the “Tokyo” comes with eight pieces of California Roll and eight pieces of assorted sushi.
Trish Sanderson is the community manager and marketing director for Yelp North County San Diego. She leads the local community of Yelp reviewers both online and off.