Sushi Ota

It’s that time again – omakase time! The one sushi restaurant in San Diego I kept hearing about was Sushi Ota. Located in a small strip mall, this restaurant was opened by Chef Ota back in 1990.

20160603_195749_27286320700_o
Dinner at Sushi Ota

Sushi Chef Ota has worked in Tokyo, Osaka, and Kobe. He came to San Diego in 1982 and was inspired to open a sushi restaurant after tasting the local seafood, specifically the sea urchin. I was so excited to be seated at his spot at the sushi bar! We were enthusiastically greeted by the smiling chef.

20160603_200337_27286326570_o
Chef Ota!

I made a reservation for the Friday night a couple weeks prior. I heard they can get pretty busy, especially on the weekend. I was interested in a nigiri omakase and let the chef know. I was also interested in some sake. Our waitress, Saori, recommended a nice and mild one.

20160603_200841_26954515413_o
Sake

My coworker decided to order a few a la carte items. A plate was placed in front of me and it was almost time to begin the omakase.

20160603_201408_27563242045_o
Omakase

My coworker ordered the good ol’ California roll. This wasn’t your ordinary California roll. This was one was made with chunks of actual snow crab. She really enjoyed it.

20160603_201615_27563251605_o
California Roll

I started off my omakase with a tuna flight. From left to right, I was given toro (fatty tuna), chutoro (medium fatty tuna), and zuke. Zuke is an old school preparation where raw fish is soaked in soy sauce.

20160603_201603_26953483684_o
Tuna Flight

The fatty tunas were heavenly. The soy marinated tuna was delicious. It really brought out the flavor of the tuna without being overly salty.

20160603_201611_27528902646_o
Marinated Tuna

The next couple of pieces were specials for the night.

20160603_202041_26953488644_o
Next Plate

I was expecting a strong taste from the baby sardines, but they were pretty mild. They were really good.

20160603_202044_27464408232_o
Baby Sardines

The firefly squids were tender and not chewy at all.

20160603_202047_27490624991_o
Firefly Squid

20160603_205719_27563300665_o

The nigiri continued to be served in pairs, which was okay with me. Chef Ota explained each piece and paced the meal nicely.

20160603_202409_26953493764_o
Next Up!

The Spanish mackerel was topped with ginger and scallions. Thumbs up.

20160603_202447_27464412412_o
Spanish Mackerel

The sea urchin was amazing! My favorite type of uni is from Japan because it is so sweet. Well this local uni was super fresh and really sweet. I just wish I had more of it while I was there.

20160603_202450_26954532353_o
San Diego Uni

The next two pieces included Black Snapper and Kohada.

20160603_202824_27286355960_o
Black Snapper and Kohada (Gizzard Shad)

The next plate showcased a nice piece of octopus along with its suction cups. It was really fresh and topped with a bit of lemon zest. I usually expect some chewiness when it comes to octopus, but it was nice and tender.

20160603_203444_27563269815_o
Super Fresh Octopus

After a couple California rolls, my coworker ordered the shrimp tempura dinner. The batter was light and crispy.

20160603_204408_26953506444_o
Tempura Dinner

The sushi bar was hopping! Everybody was throwing back sake shots and enjoying all the tasty sushi and dishes of the chefs behind the bar.

20160603_205708_27563294105_o

The next melt-in-your-mouth pieces were yellowtail belly and salmon belly. They were very generous cuts! These were the only two pieces suggested to not eat in one bite.

20160603_204536_27464424492_o
Yellowtail and Salmon Belly

Chef Ota always checked on us and always had a smile on his face. I told him I could go for a couple more pieces. He happily delivered. I enjoyed a nice piece of giant clam.

20160603_204946_27286368170_o
Giant Clam

I also had some tasty orange clam. Both were tender

20160603_205328_26954543413_o
Orange Clam

The omakase was almost over, but not before having a delightful piece of anago with a dab of sweet sauce.

20160603_210856_27464438522_o
Anago (Saltwater Eel)

I was more than satisfied with the omakase. Although the nigiri portion ended, Chef Ota made sure we enjoyed a couple more items. A piping hot bowl of miso soup with clams came out. Good stuff.

20160603_210204_27563303365_o
Clam Miso Soup

After I finished the soup, we were given a plate of “special” tempura. It consisted of three types – shrimp, mushroom stuffed with tuna, and squid wrapped around crab and shiso leaf. It was served with lemon, truffle salt, and matcha salt. Awesome! I loved the stuffed mushroom.

20160603_210841_27528920086_o
Special Tempura

We ended the great meal with a sweet and tart berry mousse with fresh raspberries.Β  Thank you so much Chef Ota!

20160603_212403_27490636531_o
Raspberry Dessert

Dinner was great. Service was excellent. Saori was lovely. Head to Sushi Ota for terrific sushi using some of the best local seafood in the area. I’ll be sure to come back the next time I’m in San Diego. More uni please!


Sushi Ota
4529 Mission Bay Drive
San Diego, CA 92109
(858) 270-5670
Website

Advertisements

Author: Desiree

Desired Tastes is a Food and Travel Blog written by Desiree, a food enthusiast from New Jersey who just wants to see the world and eat good food.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s