Bombay Diaries: On the Sushi Trail

If you follow this foodie on Instagram, you may have noticed that a #SushiForDays sort of situation has taken over my feed of late.

There’s been just no getting enough of a good thing, especially seeing as we’re ridiculously spoilt for choice with the number of vibrant, vegetarian options across the city!

Here are my top picks if you fancy rolling along this veggie sushi trail around Bombay.


Wasabi by Morimoto, Taj Hotel

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Helmed by Masaharu Morimoto – ex-executive chef of the of the first Nobu in New York – Wasabi at the Taj, Mumbai, really needs no introduction – it’s the most well-known (not to mention the most extravagant!) Japanese restaurant in India to date.

Although much of the menu reflects a contemporary approach (think rock corn tempura; wasabi tacos; tofu carpaccio and panko truffle lilly bud), the sushi here shines for its elegant simplicity, served with fresh wasabi grated directly on to your plate. And it has to be said – the generously-filled avocado rolls are the best you’ll find in the city.

Wasabi by Morimoto, The Taj Mahal Palace, B K Boman Behram Marg, Apollo Bandar, Colaba, Mumbai, 400001


Fenix at the Oberoi

So it’s only natural to be more than a little sceptical about ordering sushi in a restaurant that also caters Indian and Continental fare.

But the sushi at Fenix, the elegant lobby-level restaurant at the Oberoi hotel, is quite literally a showstopper.

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Signature specialities include the Maika (asparagus, cucumber and cream cheese) and Midori (tempura vegetables, cream cheese and jalapeño wrapped in beancurd skin) – both deliciously creamy yet flavoursome.

Just be sure to save room for dessert, as the restaurant’s international mix of cuisines comes in real handy with a dedicated soufflé menu on offer! With it’s light and fluffy exterior giving way to a deliciously molten and gooey centre, the chocolate chip one is my favourite here.

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Sushi & soufflés – all the maki-ngs of a perfect pick-me-up, wouldn’t you agree…

Fenix at the Oberoi, The Oberoi, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Rd, Nariman Point, Mumbai, 400021


Wink

… Speaking of which.

Rainbow sushi rolls paired with a round of equally colourful martinis also make for a fabulous midweek treat over a #GirlsNightOut at Wink at the President hotel.

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Hand-rolled to weigh precisely the same, the sushi here quite literally packs a punch – each piece as big as my fist!

I especially loved the rainbow uramaki (inside-out maki rolls) with its delicate outer layers of carrots and avocado that textured each bite beautifully… And as I recently blogged, it’s just one of the many reasons I’ll raise a toast to several more anniversary milestones for this timeless, Asian-inspired bar which celebrated a ten year run earlier this month!

Full review of Wink, here.

Wink at Vivanta by Taj – President, 90, Cuffe Parade, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400005


Yuuka

The menu at Boston-based chef Ting Yen’s Japanese restaurant at the St Regis is notorious for temperamentally swaying between hits and misses (the latter, increasingly more frequent).

But I have two words for you: Tiger Tear.

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The combination of habañero, avocado and cream cheese is pure genius, resulting in a swift explosion of fiery, lush and crunchy flavours and textures.

Balanced with a side of the cool and creamy avocado tartare (layered with more cream cheese and tempura batter), it’s always spot on!

Yuuka at the St. Regis Mumbai, 37 Block, 462, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400013


Koko

So I’ll give you three reasons why I’m loco for Koko (the new Asian gastropub in Kamala Mills).

Buzzy vibes, cracking cocktails and the Koko Special…

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The avocado-clad roll is strewn with spicy mayo and moreish bits of tempura batter that you’ll be picking off your plate, long after the last sushi has been scoffed down!

For more highlights from this über-trendy new restaurant/ bar/ lounge, have a read of my full review, here.


Ruka

Wandering away from the beaten path, at some point the sushi trail turned into more of a sushi road trip, taking this South Bombay stalwart across the sea link to Ruka – one of Bahrain’s most famous Japanese restaurants, which recently opened in Juhu.

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The spicy avocado roll was every bit as good as it looked, with a dash of ginger pickle adding an extra kick.

Japanese chef Masato Toida also made it worth our trek over to the sleek new restaurant, sending out off-menu, intricately layered creations for us to try. Avocado, asparagus tempura, cucumber and shiitake mushrooms each held their own in an artful three-in-one configuration – although, I did find the rice a tad too sticky, which made it difficult to get through each piece neatly in a lady-like fashion (#awks).

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Meanwhile, the combination of avocado, asparagus, tofu and udon noodles(!) had some more bite to it as the rolls were coated with a light, almost foam-like tempura batter that was quite unlike the tempura crumbs you’ll usually find stuffed into veg sushi rolls.

We washed it all down with a Japanese mule – a tart yet luscious mix of yuzu, orgeat (almond based) syrup and apple juice. Needless to say, it was one suitably satisfying afternoon!

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Ruka, 462, AB Nair Road, Juhu, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400049


And finally, if it’s something tried, tested and comfortingly familiar that you’re after.. then perhaps Umame, Kofuku or Shiro might be more up your alley instead?

To be honest, I haven’t been to Umame (Churchgate-based) or Kofuku in quite some time now, but I did swing by Shiro recently. With its retro tunes, zen-like vibes and of course the classic, consistently on-point vegetarian maki platter – this is one establishment that safely goes to prove that old really is gold!


So what are your sushi favourites around town? It would maki mi-so happy if you’d share in the comments below!

Author: The Foodie Diaries

A food travel & lifestyle journal, chronicling my culinary and other adventures around town.

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