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Akiko's Restaurant

Sushi is a food group that tends to increase in price proportionally with quality - at least in this city. I’m sure in Japan you can get incredible uni for relatively cheap in an alleyway, but we are not in a Japanese alleyway.

Akiko’s Restaurant, a small and understatedly upscale sushi spot between Union Square and the Financial District is a place where you can eat amazing fish and drink top-shelf sake provided you are OK with paying up for it. It's the kind of place that has two-year-aged soy sauce - no Kikkoman up in this joint. And besides quality slices of sashimi, they have some crazy sh*t going off on the menu. Turns out, monkfish have delicious livers. We ate a baby barracuda and didn’t even feel bad about it.

The restaurant itself is unassuming from the outside, lacking any noticeable signage, and welcomes you inside with a long narrow bar, wooden tables, and chopsticks in a slightly industrial space with half the room covered in fancy wallpaper and half outfitted with exposed bricks and pipes. Service is attentive, with excellent recommendations and a good cadence of dish delivery.

Also pro tip: do not accidentally go to Akiko’s Sushi - a standard sushi joint a few blocks away. Rookie mistake. On our most recent visit to Akiko’s Restaurant (431 Bush Street - remember this to shout repeatedly at your Uber driver and or/yourself to get you to the right spot) we used up an Open Table gift card we’d been sitting on to splurge on the omakase, which runs $100 a person. It was well worth it. The omakase dining experience is leisurely and full of surprises, and at Akiko’s they know how to reel you in for next time: finish your offering with wagyu beef topped with a dab of truffles. I’m sold, it’s over, I will now run the streets of San Francisco declaring the glory and power of this piece of meat.

Food Rundown

Mixed Green Salad
Would we normally write about this? No - but the simple greens, avocado and cucumbers were doused in a citrusy-soy dressing that is the stuff of dreams.

All excellent - particularly the trout and deep sea grouper. Never had those guys before.

Monkfish Liver
Stop what you’re doing. Procure a fishing rod and reel, catch yourself a monkfish and eat its liver. The foie gras of the sea.

Seared Baby Barracuda
You need to eat this before it eats you. Safety first.

Smoked Crab
Uniquely delicious. They serve it up on a wooden spoon which is fun.

Wagyu Beef
A hearty slice of wagyu beef with a dollop of black truffle. You can die now.

Mochi Ice Cream
Cubes of ice cream encased in mochi - the black sesame was sweet, savory, and more or less perfect.

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