Monday, September 29, 2008

Miso Harney!!!

This sushi bar is called “Miso Harney.”

As in miso soup and Harney Street in San Diego where the restaurant sits, what were you thinking???

Although cleverly named as if to attract tourists, this sushi bar is really more of a local’s hangout. It’s a long trek anyhow from the hubbub of Old Town, where visitors wander about and Mexican restaurants dominate the food scene.

But even out-of-towners like myself are greeted and treated like family here; the staff is friendly and efficient as they seat you in the plushy lounge-like dining area or at the oversize sushi bar. A DJ spins cool cacophony from a corner booth and a menu filled with creatively named items tempts you to read every exasperatingly fun description.

Names like Rollz Royce Roll and Grey Poupon Roll jump off the page, screaming ingredients such as “money sauce” and—you guessed it—Grey Poupon mustard. I am adventurous with sauces, but I wasn’t in the mood to shout over the din and question the chef what exactly is money sauce, and somehow mustardy goop didn’t sound like it would pair well with deep-fried lobster in a sushi roll, so I settled for the less crazy-sounding (but still creative!) choices.

The Comfort Roll may sound placid, but the pungence of its contents contradict. Spicy tuna, tart lemon slices and chili powder are just a few of the key ingredients in this formidable roll, which bristles with shaved bonito on top. A little dipping bowl of “spicy ponzu” sauce comes with it, giving it even more flavor that it doesn’t need. $15 sounds hefty but the roll reflects its price.

By comparison, the “Andy 2 Roll” smacks of plainness (perhaps I should have tried this one first, before the other fiery one numbed my tongue) but that’s kind of nice too—at least you can taste the fresh fish, without all the torrid palate-torturing spices. This one is a milder version of the previous: spicy tuna and lemon slivers recur, but raw salmon steps in for the other flavors.

1 comment :

Unknown said...

“Money sauce” at a place called Miso Harney? So many inappropriate comments come to mind. Reminds me of the sushi place with all the naughty sushi names, Hadaka.