Yonaka Modern Japanese

September 26, 2014
A few weeks back a friend had told us about "the best" Brussel Sprouts he had recently eaten during an omakase meal at Yonaka Modern Japanese. Frank and I love Brussel Sprouts so it was easy for him to convince us to check it out during happy hour (5:00pm-6:30pm and 11:00pm to close). You cannot make reservations for the bar tables where happy hour is served. It's first come, first served, but I wouldn't anticipate a wait. We were the only patrons until 5:30, then tables slowly started to fill. The space is modern and comfortable. Comfort is important because it takes time to craft their beautiful dishes. Cold sake and Asahi drafts ($3) are available during happy hour along with a couple other options. The menu offers a variety, allowing you to create a feast. Our party of three enjoyed the following:

Beet Fries ($5) I didn't expect to enjoy these as much as I did. Crisp, earthy and slightly sweet. They were addicting.

Crispy Brussel Sprouts ($6) were highly addicting. They were caramelized and dressed with lemon chili and topped with puffed rice.

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Sake Orenji ($7) is one of their best sellers. It's beautifully presented. The flavor is fresh and clean, with a hint of orange. I thought the salmon pieces were cut too large. It would be better with more delicate cuts of fish.

Hamachi chili ($7?) was another beautiful dish. Well balanced and great flavor, but again, the fish was sliced too thick.

Negitoro Roll ($7) is blue fin tuna belly with scallions. Tasty.

Crunchy spicy tuna hand roll ($5) were a pleasant surprise. I really enjoyed the crunch, it offered a contrast texture to the soft spicy tuna. Very fresh and great flavor.

Chuka buns ($7) were quickly devoured. The pork belly was tender and nicely rendered, loved the crispness of the green apple, and the heat from the jalapeno.

Avocado nigiri ($1) so simple, but well composed with a hint of soy and citrus.

Service was attentive but disjointed to start. We were approached by no less than three staff members before identifying our server. All in all, it's a great little find.

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