Sushi Friday IX


1295 Silas Deane Highway

Wethersfield, CT 06109


Happy Birthday, Nick! Here’s a sushi bar review for you!

This entry arrives a day late. Since I missed February, I figured I’d sneak one in. It is also out of alphabetical order because when I started the Sushi Friday series the place was called Sapporo. Ginza reopened about three weeks before my first visit in November 2010 as the third in a mini-chain, Ginza in Bloomfield and the pretentious and overpriced Feng in Hartford. The change in the Wethersfield location (blue lights under the sushi bar, servers dressed in black) convinced me that I prefer the unfancy version of sushi and sashimi because the gussied up places have lots of décor and little additional to offer in the way of fresh fish or innovative food along with much higher prices.

What I like: There’s plenty of parking in a strip mall that lost its anchor store some time ago. It balances one of those all-you-can-eat buffet places at the other end of the mall. Oscar Peterson and Winton Marsalis play in the background. The portions seem generous, though less so on the second visit. The miso comes with almost too-generous portions of tofu and scallions and a manageable amount of wakame. Salad includes mesclun greens, though there was less on second visit. Shrimp shumai  without sauce adds a nice touch. Sashimi is elegant and on second visit included none of the cheap escolar but rather three each of buttery salmon, tuna that fell just short of excellent bite, and yellowtail dusted with salmon roe. A minimalist design with the daikon and a single shiso leaf. Despite what I said about the price, at $12, this place offers good value for the money.

What I don’t like: NBA basketball on the TV smack in the middle of the sushi bar. Waitresses hovered when it was Sapporo, and that hasn’t changed. On the first visit one got right on top of me to ask about my silver jewelry. The second time, the waitress put the check down, turned around, and came back to see if I’d paid it. The miso soup lacks flavor and arrives luke warm. The salad dressing drowns the greens. A sloppy Cali roll left pieces of rice in the soy-wasabe sauce.

Overall: B


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