Dallas has legions of sushi bars -Yelp lists nearly 50 in the city, and close to 200 in North Texas.
Despite Big D's excellence when it comes to Japanese dining in general, many of our sushi bars are mediocre at best, places more geared to turning out anything-goes crazy rolls than serious nigiri sushi (the kind with a slice of raw fish set on a small pad of seasoned sushi rice with a bit of wasabi).
Yet you can get excellent sushi in and around Dallas, if you know where to go. Here (in alphabetical order) are my current favorite addresses:
Hideyuki "Ryo" Iwase's laid-back neighborhood spot in Richardson has a warm, welcoming vibe, fresh wasabi and terrific sushi and specialty dishes, such as raw octopus with wasabi. Check the specials board for unusual fish: Recently the kohada (gizzard shad) featured on it was spectacular. Iwase's superb hamachi negi (yellowtail and scallion) hand roll is a great way to end.
501 W. Belt Line Road, Richardson. 972-783-6800. masamirestaurant.com. Lunch Monday-Friday; dinner nightly.
This sprawling sushi bar and restaurant in Addison has its ups and downs, but a recent lunch at the sushi bar was generally quite good. Outstanding Japanese scallops and yellowtail belly were highlights.
4860 Belt Line Road, Addison. 972-385-0168. mrsushidallas.com. Lunch and dinner daily.
On a recent visit to Masayuki Otaka's 20-year-old Lower Greenville spot, the sushi, with well-seasoned rice and fish, impressed more than ever. And the specials rocked - especially small cubes of Japanese snapper "head cheese," each topped with a dot of plum sauce, and miso-marinated foie gras.
2014 Greenville Ave., Dallas. 214-826-8989. facebook.com/pages/Teppo-Yakitori-and-Sushi-Bar/272816917271. Dinner only; closed Monday.
Focus on the special "sushi tour of Japan" offerings at Yutaka Yamato's 10-seat Uptown sushi bar (which also has a few tables) to find the fish Yamato is most excited about at the moment. Recent standouts have included sayori (halfbeak), shima aji (striped jack) and uni (sea urchin roe). If Joshu Wagyu beef sushi is available and you're a beef fan, don't miss it.
2633 McKinney Ave., Dallas. 214-969-5533. yutakasushibistro.com. Lunch Tuesday-Friday; dinner Monday-Saturday.