Sushi Combo A
w/ California Rolls, Miso Soup, and Albacore Nigiri
Dish Score: 92
Overall Score: 92
- Presentation & Creativity: 18/20
- Portion Size & Nutritional Value: 10/10
- Ingredient Compatibility: 10/10
- Flavor, Taste, Texture, & Doneness: 38/40
- Service: 7/10
- Restaurant Appearance: 4/5
- Cost vs. Value: 5/5
I don’t come from a very fish-oriented culinary background, but have become much more adventurous in my tastes lately. So visiting a sushi bar was a completely new experience for me. Well, that’s not entirely true. I had been to Haruno once before a few years back, but I ordered off of their entrée menu. Needless to say, I walked into Haruno not really knowing what to expect.
Upon entering, I stood at the podium just inside the door expecting someone to seat me. After 3-4 minutes, I began to wonder whether or not I had made the right choice. Eventually, an employee came in from outside (whom I had passed on the way in) and was told to just have a seat somewhere.
Happy to comply, I sat at an empty table (okay, most of the tables were empty) and a waiter came to get my drink order. Water, please. Declining to see the entrée menu (I was on a sushi mission), I became confused when I laid eyes on the sushi menu. I can attribute that confusion to naïveté, but I ended up ordering a Sushi Combo A, which includes 8 pieces of sushi and a whole California Roll (or Tuna Roll if that’s your preference).
My only real complaint with Haruno was the wait staff. I should never have had to stand at the door confused. If there’s no host, remove the podium.
To start me off, the waiter brought out a cup of Miso Soup. It had a nice aroma and the tofu had a good texture. Shortly afterwards, the chef brought out an amuse bouche: a single Albacore Nigiri. This was the highlight of the night and completely made up for my wait at the door. Slightly sweet, the Albacore was amazing.
A moment later, my Sushi Combo arrived. Unfortunately, I am unable to tell you what exactly each roll was, but I’ll give it my best shot. I tried to ask my waiter afterwards, but he didn’t know what the chef had brought me. I know one for a fact was the Shrimp (Ebi) Nigiri. Historically, I have not been a fan of shrimp so I was nervous to try it. I actually tried this one last, but my worries were in vain. Fresh, tender, and absolutely wonderful. If I had to guess the others, I would have to say they were the Escolar Nigiri, Salmon (Sake) Nigiri, and Squid (Ika) Nigiri. What I can tell you is that every single one of them were extremely fresh, tasted amazing, and I enjoyed every bite.
The California Rolls are more along the lines of the sushi I have experienced in the past. These however definitely exuded a quality I had not experienced yet. The rice in these rolls, as it was with the nigiri, was cooked perfectly. All the ingredients melded exactingly.
My only complaint with Haruno is the wait staff. I should never have been standing at the door confused for as long as I did. If it’s seat yourself, the podium needs to be removed. Regardless, somebody should have been more attentive that there was a customer standing in the doorway wondering what to do. Once seated, the waiter was extremely polite, but something bothered me about him having his hair partially dyed green. I’m normally not discriminating on such things, but in this environment it just felt completely out of place.
Overall, this experience was amazing. Haruno has now become one of my favorite restaurants. I’m glad I didn’t decide to walk out after my initial confusion. I do think next time I go, I will sit at the bar so I can make sure I can ask the chef what delicacies he is preparing for me.