Amagi Sushi

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  • Riverside
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By: Traci Smith

The first thing you should probably know about Amagi Sushi is that this experience is about quality, not quantity. This is excellence for its own sake.

There is simply no need to make compromises. To be perfectly frank, you are not going to find AYCE (all you can eat) sushi here, and you will not miss it. Instead, Amagi Sushi works to provide the feel of a hard-core elevated venture. This is not cattle-call sushi, but the art of Japanese cuisine with a California twist.

Every sushi place gets fresh fish in often, but Amagi Sushi brings some of their fish still alive. Touches like this separate them from usual strip mall sushi. Instead, it signals an edgy, sophisticated platform to show traditions in a seriously beautiful display of decadent and divine offerings.

Is it possible to be a believer in one bite? It was for me. I ordered the sashimi roll featuring tuna, salmon, yellowtail, crab, avocado, and asparagus, all wrapped in soy paper and served in a ponzu mustard dressing. When it came, it sparkled. I swear the clouds parted and I heard faint singing. It was the best single bite of sushi I have ever eaten.

The lobster roll features actual lobster, not langostino, like most sushi places. The volcano is served on fire! Feeling bold? Try their omakase menu for either $35.00 or $50.00 per person you get a six course meal: appetizer, soup, cold dish, hot dish, sushi, and dessert. Omakase is a traditional sushi experience that is guided by the chef’s choice rather than your own. This leads to the freshest fish, as well as surprises and innovations as the chef indulges his creative whims. To finish off your meal they have the usual mochi and green tea ice cream, as well as the not so usual French macarons in several seasonal flavors. While I was there, I saw people come in just for this specialty alone. It seems once the word was out just how good these wonderful cookies are, they developed their own following.

The restaurant setting is intimate, with only 41 seats. The atmosphere is quiet. The staff is seasoned, warm, and gracious. You can enjoy beer, wine or sake with your meal. Amagi Sushi is closed Monday, but they offer a Happy Hour Tuesday — Thursday from 3-5pm with great food and drink specials.

As I left Amagi Sushi, I found myself already longing to go back. I felt an ache of sorrow that this meal was over. Amagi Sushi will be a regular spot for me and mine.  Great service, excellent sushi, exceptional experience, see for yourself.