I was in a new city ready to enjoy a sushi dinner, but I wasn’t sure what to expect of Austin’s sushi scene. I’ll be honest, I didn’t think there would be much to it. I heard about a couple trendy fusion places, but I’ve been leaning towards more traditional places lately. I was really excited to find out about Kyōten Sushiko, a small restaurant offering an omakase-only dinner. I immediately made a reservation.
Reservation can easily be made on the website and open a month out on Sunday at 11pm. There are two seatings for the omakase dinner, 5:30pm and 8pm. It costs $150 and a $75 deposit is required to hold your reservation, which will be applied towards your final bill. I made my reservation for the Thursday I arrived at 8pm.
The sushi bar is located towards the back in a cozy space with simple decor. The white walls are bare except for a picture of the sushi trailer it first started out as. The omakase is prepared and presented by Chef Otto Phan. Chef Phan uses various methods of aging and curing to bring out the depth and complexity of the fish. He has worked in various restaurants including two of Austin’s most popular Japanese restaurants, Uchi and Uchiko. Before coming to Austin, he showcased his craft at Nobu and Masa in New York City.
I arrived right on time for my 8pm reservation and took my seat at the beginning of the counter. It was me and 6 other diners. We all watched as Chef Phan carefully prepared everything for our omakase.
It was time to begin! The chef meticulously prepared each piece of sushi and placed it in front of each diner one-by-one. We started things off with a lovely piece of ocean trout.
I also decided to do the sake pairing which included five different sake, each one was presented every few courses.
The fish was delightful. Each piece was prepared in a way that really made it shine. Chef Phan explained every piece to us and was more than happy to answer any questions we had.
Even something as simple as avocado became extra savory. It was wrapped around perfectly seasoned rice and excellent seaweed.
The small plates of tako (octopus) and hotate (scallop) were very tasty. The octopus was topped with a caper relish and the scallop had a refreshing splash of yuzu.
I really enjoyed the chopped up bits of fish and seasoning to make a unique sushi tartare. It was one of my favorite pieces that night.
I also enjoyed every sake that was served. Each one offered a distinct taste and differed from ones I’ve had before.
A small spoonful of abalone topped with liver sauce seemed a bit concerning to a couple diners, but we all enjoyed it thoroughly.
The presentation of some of the pieces were simply beautiful.
I especially liked the unpasteurized sake that were rich and savory. They made a nice pairing with the last few pieces of the omakase.
Another favorite was the miso-cured Santa Barbara uni over uni rice.
The omakase concluded with a piece of tamago (omelette) and a few sweet bites of fruit in plum wine.
Dinner was very good. The sushi was delightful and uncomplicated. It was great to see a traditional omakase in the city of Austin. Chef Phan was super nice and easy-going which allowed everybody in the modest space to easily talk and joke with one another. It was a pleasure to dine at Kyōten Sushiko during my first night in town. Thank you, Chef Phan!
4600 Mueller Blvd, Ste 1035
Austin, TX 78723