WhenI lived in Los Angeles I loved the multitude of sushi joints in the city. From the fancy schmancy places like Nobu to the beloved and even more popular ones in the strip malls across the Valley, where I called home. The most popular one was Katsu-ya tucked in a corner in little strip mall off Ventura Blvd, but I liked another even more unassuming sushi place just down the street in an even tinier strip mall called Asanebo. You walked in and always felt like family and the sushi, goodness the sushi was incredible no matter what you ordered.
When I left Los Angeles for Austin I wasn’t upset about the move much, except for my sushi and shabu shabu loss. Don’t get me wrong Austin has amazing sushi choices. Uchi anyone? But I knew I was going to miss the family feel, service and sushi that didn’t cost an arm and a leg if you were craving it. Leave it to my friend Kari who has been going to, wait for it, a sushi place in a little strip mall off of Parmer Lane up in North Austin called Tomo Dachi. Bit of a drive? Sure. Is this new my new family sushi joint that I totally love? Bet your bottom dollar.
You walk in, especially with Kari because they lurve her (who doesn’t?), and cozy up right up to the sushi bar. Check out their specials and ask Sushi Chef Steve Riad (the owner) or any of the other excellent sushi chefs behind the bar what’s good, they will never let you down. I love this place, Steve and his wife Tina Son (head maitre’d and responsible for the awesome decor) take such amazing care of you and the food is amazing. Always get as many specials as you can, but some items off of the menu you can’t miss are Cherry Bomb, Screaming Orgasm, Fatty Tuna done Steve’s Way which means slightly torched, and the sushi sampler done roulette style. As you know sashimi and the rice it sits on are typically held together with a light paste of spicy wasabi. Roulette style loads on a big piece of wasabi instead but you can’t tell until you put it in your mouth. The burn is mild and fades quickly, but there is something so funny about watching your friends to see if they’ve been “hit” or not. One time all three of my friends got hit and I didn’t. Bahahahaha. Also, be sure to ask for their cucumber sake or if they have it, watermelon-infused sake. I’m warning you now, you will drink this like candy so be careful!
If you are looking for a great sushi experience, a comfortable and totally fun environment get thee to Tomo Dachi immediately. I can gaurantee you will probably find us there any given weekend giggling at someone who has been hit with a wallop of wasabi.