As I mentioned a few weeks ago, Mario and I are sushi fiends. From paper thin cuts of sashimi (yes, I know that's not really sushi per se, but humor me here) to fusion rolls stuffed with cream cheese, we are always up for sampling from every end of the spectrum. During the last fifteen years, we have eaten our way through numerous sushi spots in the city and suburbs; we definitely have our favorites, but we're always up for giving new restaurants a try. So of course, we were excited to discover that the space that once housed Lincoln Square's renowned (and personal neighborhood favorite) Tank Sushi is now home to the newly renovated Miku Sushi.
Miku Sushi is the brainchild of husband and wife pair Stanley Liem and Sara Katekaew, who actually met while working at Tank Sushi in 2008. Katekaew spent a decade as Tank's general manager and Liem was a onetime waiter who left Tank in 2011, pursuing his dream of opening his own restaurant. Eventually, the duo married and opened a second spot, a popular Thai restaurant in Chinatown. Shortly after Tank finally closed its doors (and briefly housed the quickly shuttered Laughing Bird), the owners offered the pair the opportunity to purchase the space and implement their own vision of upscale sushi in the very same spot where they first connected seven years ago.
How gorgeous is this little corner nook?! The swirling blue waves reminded me of one of my favorite Japanese woodblock prints.
The pair designed the space to include a fish case and counter seating so that diners can watch the sushi chefs at work.
Garlic Edamame. I'll admit that there's nothing remarkable about edamame, but I will say that if you are a garlic lover, this version is a must-try (it's super garlicky!).
Tuna Tartar with truffle soy, avocado, chive, micro greens & chips. This is a dish that we order practically every time we see it on a restaurant's menu, so we're constantly comparing and contrasting versions - we both agreed that this version was one of the best we've ever had! The tuna was so fresh and paired perfectly with the avocado and truffle (and really, you can't beat truffle!). Plus, it was so beautifully presented! Miku translates to "lasting beauty" in Japanese; it's clear that they take care to use that concept in their plating.
Calamari with honey wasabi sauce. Mario particularly enjoyed this dish because it was filled with tentacles (the one part that creeps me out) and I loved the perfectly balanced sweet/spicy sauce.
Hamachi: goma-ae miso, black pepper, scallion & truffle oil soy. This was another highlight of our meal - the fish was buttery smooth and super truffle-y (similar to the truffle soy from the Tuna Tartar); I easily could have eaten an entire plate of this nigiri for lunch!
Flaming Dragon Maki: shrimp temura, salmon, super white tuna, black tobiko & scallion. As soon as I heard this was served on a flaming plate, I just knew we had to order it. Obviously, Miku wins for the presentation of this roll - really, who doesn't love a plate of fire?! The only tricky part is that if you're going to take photos, make sure you snap them quickly; we learned the hard way that if you take too long, the flames will bake the bottom of the roll to the plate. Whoops.
Fiesta Maki: spicy tuna, lobster, avocado, cilantro, super white tuna, red tobiko & wasabi aioli. Out of everything we sampled, this was definitely the richest and most substantial roll, thanks to the combination of the tuna and lobster. I particularly enjoyed the slight peppery bite from the wasabi aioli and cilantro.
Robusuta: lobster, fried banana, red tobiko wrapped inside-out with crispy rice, topped with micro greens & spicy honey mayo. Our final roll was unlike any other maki I've ever had before and stood out as another favorite of the afternoon. Mario wasn't a big fan of the fried banana (it was a little too sweet for him), but I loved the crunchy banana combined with the buttery lobster and slightly spicy mayo If I'm going to pick a maki roll, I'm going to go all out with a decadent roll like this one!
Although we were completely stuffed and packing up our stuff, our waitress insisted that we try the Cookie Dough Egg Rolls. Stuffed with hot cookie dough and served with strawberry dipping sauce, these dessert rolls were a fun play on the traditional egg roll... and yes, we scarfed them all down. ;-)
You can try all of this deliciousness and more at Miku Sushi: 4514 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL. The appetizing and creative rolls, beautiful presentations, and fantastic service make this sushi spot a must visit for seasoned sushi lovers and newbies alike!
Disclosure: I received a complimentary meal to facilitate this post. Review and all opinions are my own.