Today is: Monday, July 15, 2024

Sashi Sushi and Sake Lounge Review

Experience the most notorious establishments in Manhattan Beach: Sashi Sushi & Sake Lounge. The design aesthetic of the newly refined restaurant mirrors the modern sophistication seen on its menu. Owner
Jeff Benson and Greg Harris tells us Sashi Sake & Sushi Lounge a "high-end,
Koi-type" Japanese restaurant, will be taking over. With Makoto Okuwa as
executive chef. Okuwa worked with Masarahu Morimoto for several
years and even appeared on Iron Chef with the Iron Chef.


Sashi Sake & Sushi Lounge fusion possesses a contemporary sensibility and it is okay to leave your inhibitions at the door. Sashi Sake & Sushi Lounge is definitely a place where visitors aren’t afraid to unwind and dine. The atmosphere is sexy, comfortable, and playful with the service being approachable and friendly. Paying homage
to its world famous neighborhood, select menu items and
specialty cocktails are appropriately named 

Wildfire Martini                                           Mint Mojito

and creative! Explores its amazing Asian cuisine and his prowess in the kitchen by elevating the dishes with fine-dining flair yet producing tastes that are familiar and comforting. Master Sushi Chef Makoto Okuwa offers his culinary expertise
to the sushi bar. The menu and the atmosphere of Sashi Sushi &
Sake Lounge keeps the experience grounded.

Grand Opening Celebration

Seated among the swank décor, cool lighting and plush booths at Sashi Sushi in Manhattan Beach, there’s no shortage of delicious delights. A typical evening might begin with a Sake and a bite from Sushi Chef’s Makoto’s sushi bar like the Crispy Asparagus; a Lightly Beer Battered Tempura Asparagus with Nori Aioli.

Next, the Hot dishes menu that offers a seemingly endless selection of small dishes
as varied as Bincho Kobe Strip marinated in sake served with potato fries. The
dinner menu is equally tantalizing, filled with Chef Makoto’s unique “new Asian cuisine” creations. Their amazing bar presents an extensive award-winning
wine list that is as varied as Chef Makoto’s cuisine, and desserts like
Bento Box offer a decadent conclusion.

      Strawberry Margarita                         Kiwi and Strwaberry Mojito 

Next time you’re craving a taste of the exotic, look no further than the heart of Manhattan Beach, this restaurant waits to transport you halfway around the world.

The bar and lounge offers a casual gathering area for after-work drinks and appetizers, while the sushi bar offers an up-close view of Sushi Chef
Makoto's skill with a sushi knife. The main dining room offers
booths and tables for groups from two to twenty.

The wine and sake list provides an extensive and well-selected array of wines by the glass, half bottle, and bottle. While its cuisine is decidedly worldly, the focus of the wine list is on California wines. "When you have a backyard with all of these delicious wines, it's hard to ignore them”.  Not surprisingly, the California-influenced selection stands up well to the extensive menu, with an array of versatile wines that promise
to pair well with any combination of dishes on the menu. With an extensive sake
list, a sake bar, and an in-house sake sommelier to provide guidance on food
pairings and sake flights, Sashi is the perfect setting for sake expert and novices
alike. Intimate lounge, expansive outdoor seating and lustrous bar combine to
create an alluring vibe. Sashi is the weekend hotspot, and the choice for a
memorable weeknight dinner or lunch.The versatility of the wine list is a
must, as the overarching theme of Sashi's menu is diversity.

Great Selection of Sake

The menu offers a globetrotting array of small plate dishes that pull from the best
of Japanese, Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese. Augmenting the selection are a
handful of entree-sized dishes, as well as an array of sushi,
sashimi, nigiri, and traditional maki rolls.

As we sink into the plush seat, we take in the scene around us. The design is moder and it creates a warm, welcoming space.  It is both familiar and exotic, and pulled between the two, we feel both intrigued and relaxed. The lively buzz that fills
the room reinforces our sentiment, and it is not long before we join
in the din of diners chatting away happily.

To get the most of the diverse menu, it is almost imperative that tables embrace the concept of sharing. The restaurant encourages this and each table is set with a
stack of clean plates that is replenished as needed. Unless instructed otherwise, servers place dishes from the kitchen in the center of the table, allowing
guests to serve themselves from communal plates.

Crispy Rice and Spicy Tuna

Sharing is a noble goal, but when our first dish arrived I selfishly wished I had an order all to myself. The Crispy Rice and Spicy Tuna; a pan-fried Crispy Susih Rice toped with Spicy Tuna and Tobiko was fabulous! The Shishito Pepper sauteed in a Ponzu Ssauce topped with Dried Bonito was a nice way to start our amazing dinner!

Kobe Beef Carpaccio                                Filet Migon Dinner

It took an entirely different flavor to distract me from the Kobe Beef Carpaccio;
a Thinly Sliced Kobe Beef Sashimi and Fresh Asian Pear Salad drizzled with a
Sweet Sesame Soy. This dish was bold where the meat was subtle,
the tender meat bursting with strong soy flavor.

Hamichi Yishaaki

Preparing Hamichi Yishaaki                            Great Japanese Beers   

The Hamichi Yishaaki was also another great creation that was not on the menu, lending an unmistakable toasted flavor to each bite. The fish rested on a bed of
rice tossed with green onions as well as an intriguing and playful raw egg that
was cooked at the plate. The sweet innocence of the dressing contrasted
with the dark flavors of the fish in a delicious dichotomy.

Filet Mignon and Black Cod Skewers

One of the more popular Robata Grill a traditional Japanese cooking on a Bincho Charcoal Girll served with Three Dipping Sauces: Fresh tomato Chili, Aji Honey Mustard and Ginger Ponzu.  I saw at least four orders being carried to other tables. The dish was playfully constructed for sharing, the thick cubes of Niku; Filet Mignon with Seet Tare Sauce and Black Cod and Kani the Alaskan King Crab. The fish glistened with sesame oil and green onion marinade, a medley of flavors that
seeped mingling with the light sweetness of the freshly cooked meats.

Spicy Miso Chilean Sea Bass

Spicy Miso Chilean Sea Bass, one bite was everything a bite should be rich, comforting, and a medley of distinct flavors and textures that merged to become
one on the tongue. The fish was positively luscious, the deliciously viscous lending
a crunch that was sweet and salty at once. The fish, plump and flaky, eagerly soaked up both of these rich accompaniments, so each single bite offered a gratuitously
rich, luxurious flavor. It was the third time this meal I wanted each bite to linger
on and on and on. We also enjoyed the Crispy Asparagus; the lightly Beer
Battered Tempura Asparagus with Nori Aioli, it was phenomenal!

   Crispy Asparagus                                   Jidori Chicken Cigars

Also the Jidori Chicken Cigars was a flavor explosion: crisp, slightly sweet spring
rolls stuffed with Jidori Chicken and Vegetables served with a Wasabi BBQ sauce.
A way to a plump, savory filling that resonated with harmonious flavors of chicken
and spices. It was another dish I could have selfishly kept all to myself.

Salmon and Tuna Sushi 
While any combination of the menu’s that could easily make a meal, the options at Sashi Sushi span well beyond small plates. The sushi menu is hard to pass up,
although its offerings are far more traditional yet, the freshness of the fish and
purity of flavor can mean a refreshing palate cleanser between courses.

Sweet Shrinp, Unagi , Tuna and Scallop Sushi

We got an amazing feast that Chef Makoto sent to our table that was simply magnificent; The Sushi and Sashimi’s offered to us went beyond our expectation.
The Chu Toro,  medium fatty Tuna offered just that. As is traditional with lighter-fleshed fish, no wasabi or soy was presented. After so many varied flavors and cuisines, it was a refreshing return to simplicity. We also tried the Toro a fatty
Tuna, the Syake; a King Salmon; the Amaebi, a live Sweet Shrimp, a Hotate;
Scallop, a Kani; King Crag, a Uni; Sea Urchin, Anago; Sea Eel, and Kobe;
American Kobe Beef. But all good flavors eventually vanish from the
tongue, and we soon found ourselves with another round
of empty plates and a very satisfied palate.

The Sweet Bento Box

In no hurry to leave our jovial surroundings and indeed the restaurant was now packed we opted for dessert. The sweet Bento Box, the most exotic of our choices, ensured we had one last stunning experience before leaving. Playful, full of sweet flavors,
and thoroughly decadent, it was the last stop on a whirlwind culinary tour.

    Chef Makoto Okuwa                         Jeff Benson Co-Owner (right)

As we slurped the last spoonful of our dessert, I knew that next time I felt even a
hint of wanderlust; I would unhesitatingly make my way to Sashi Sushi & Sake Lounge, which is indeed an ideal destination for dinners, serious
foodies, hipsters and neighborhood locals alike.       

Our special thanks to Chef Makoto Okuwa, Leonard Matsumoto and Jeff Benson
for allowing us to experience one of the best Sushi dinners we have ever had.

For map and location click Here!

For more information please visit their website at

Article By: Mary Adams
Photos By: Chris Marx

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