A Diamond in the Rough. This place exceeds my expectations everytime. I'm craving it right now just talking about it. We heard about this little treasure from a friend and decided to try it since we can't seem to find any good sushi places in our area. It is a very small resturant, so if you are going on a Saturday night, expect to wait at least 20 mins....but it is so worth the wait. The atmosphere is energetic and welcoming; great place to go with a group of friends. Their menu is very creative, and delicious. My favorite roll is the Sexy Lady, which has mango and jalepenos; the perfect blend of sweet and spicy. My husband and I usually share it, but lately I've been ordering my own roll. It can get a little pricey, but what sushi place isn't? I love this place, and definitely recommend giving it a try, you will be pleasantly surprised.
Sushi Plantation in Mission Viejo.
As soon as you walk into Sushi Plantation, you will be gladly received. Someone who works there will smile at you, bow almost imperceptibly, and take you to your seat. The sushi chefs will look up with a big grin, and bellow a hearty greeting. You will feel welcome, and appreciated. They want you in their restaurant, and they want you to eat their fish, because they buy it at the LA fish market each morning. They know that once you eat there, you will return.
Such was my experience at Sushi Plantation. It’s in a little shopping center I’ve driven past thousands of times, at Avery and Marguerite in Mission Viejo. You walk in, and there are Polaroid pictures of happy diners taped to almost every flat surface. It seems to be a tradition here, and in every single photograph, the subjects look completely thrilled. That’s what fish of this quality will do to people.
We put our dining experience in the capable hands of a friendly sushi chef named Yuta, and asked him to surprise us with whatever was especially good that day. Now, I consider myself someone who is well-versed in the ways of California sushi. My friends and I have been devoted to it for years. I can honestly say Sushi Plantation gave me the best fish I’ve ever had. Fatty tuna, baby albacore, Japanese oysters, pompano, the list goes on and on. And the chefs were clearly enjoying our adventurous spirit and connoisseur’s tastes. The dishes they prepared for us became more and more elaborate, the chefs outdoing themselves each time. The meal culminated in a beautiful arrangement of premium raw fish and jalapenos and fried onions and oysters and I can’t even remember what else. But it was all absolutely unique, created on the spot by talented people who loved what they were doing.
As Russ and I gorged ourselves on the best sushi and sashimi (no rolls, please) we’d ever had, the owner of the establishment, a man named Yamamoto, took good care of us; coming by to pour our beers himself, to proudly tell us about his habit of buying fresh fish in Los Angeles daily, and to recommend various types of exotic stuff that we hadn’t had the fortune to know yet.
Pompano was a new experience for me. Yamamoto came by with the fish on a plate prior to cutting, so we could have a look at it, because neither of us had seen it before. The chef happily worked his magic, and it became a little platter of incredibly delicate, subtle-tasting sushi that we gobbled up all-too quickly. They then fry the rest of the entire fish, and bring it out for us to nibble on. We ate it all, fins and tail and eyes and everything! Incredible!
Speaking as a guy who’s had his share of great sushi, this was really the best I’ve ever gotten my hands on, making Sushi Plantation my go-to place for Japanese food. Thanks Yamamoto!
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