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Yuzen Sushi Restaurant

Restaurants / Spokane /

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Odds are you are in for a good experience when you're the only non-Japanese patron in a sushi restaurant. Granted, Yuzen wasn't exactly filled to the brim during our visit, but the point withstands.

And for those who claim Yuzen has the best sushi in Spokane... Well, you are probably correct. Here we saw a perfect balance between fresh and tasty rolls, all beautifully and artfully assembled.

We tried an array of four rolls during our visit, spanning from the American standards to more creative creations.

First, the "Crunchy Siberian Roll". This one was of the spicy kind, topped with something only identified as a "spicy sauce", in addition to a "spicy mayo" on the inside. A smattering of jalapeño added just an extra toe to the kick, with tuna and cream cheese doing its best to fight back with a bit off mellowness. Overall, though, the spiciness won out, and this roll might be best suited for those who like to go the hotter route.

The "Juicy Roll" also packed quite a punch, what with the sriracha sauce and a house vinaigrette drizzled on the outside. The mango, salmon, and tuna did a better job at taking the edge off here -- "better" depending on your definition, of course; it might not be "better" if you like spicy rolls -- and the avocado gave the roll a creamy texture. Overall a perfectly balanced roll.

More on the American side you have the "Philly Roll" which is pretty much exactly what you'd expect. The freshness of the fish put it over any other sushi spot we've tried in town though, and this is still a tasty type of roll, whichever way you look at it.

Finally, the vegetarian stand-by, the "Veggie Roll". Not exactly the most exciting pick, but a very good roll all the same. The pickled carrot and "Japanese pickle" gave the palette a nice little flavor-injection, and the avocado was, again, creamy and fresh tasting.

I'm sure there will be those who will be yelling about not seeing much of cream cheese in their rolls during their two week vacation in Japan which I'm sure that's true, but really, get over yourself. If the dozen or so Japanese guests didn't mind, we're sure you'll be OK too.

Most importantly: The freshness of the fish and other ingredients used at Yuzen is quite outstanding. You'd think you were eating at an oceanside restaurant, and the rice, too, had more depth to its flavor than what we are used to around here.

The Division location doesn't feature the prettiest view in town, but the beautifully assembled rolls make up for it. As does the flavor of them. Everything we tried, miso soup included, was stellar.

Check Yuzen out ASAP if you haven't already. This is one of the better Spokane dining experiences we have had in a while.