Genki Sushi — restaurant review — Hawai’i
Posted on July 4, 2007 by Kris Nelson
Genki Sushi is the place to go for a quick, fast and yummy lunch, just ignore the scowling foreboding yellow logo face. It’s not just truly tasty sushi at a verrry reasonable price (starts at around $1.95 per plate of 2 nigiri), it’s the thrilling element of capture. There you are seated on a shiny wooden stool at a pristine counter in front of a revolving circular track which propels the plates past you and you pick up whatever catches your fancy. No hesitation now, it’s snatch and grab. It’s kind of like you’re on a sushi safari or something. That is the thrill of kaiten, which is usually a sign of the lowest form of sushi, but ah slum it a little because Genki Sushi is worth it. Fresh quality ingredients top their breakneck-speed robot-made rice balls. No joke, the rice is formed by a machine. Aside from the slightly smaller sized sushi, you’ll be surprised Genki‘s a franchise. Take a friend and challenge them to polish off the most plates. In addition to nigiri, they have deep fried oysters, iceberg salad bowls, tofu blocks with shredded katsuo (shaved bonito flakes). And if you don’t like what’s revolving, feel free to order something à la carte from any of the many buzzing and über attentive waitstaff.
This past trip I missed their corn and mayo gunkan that Lee tyan introduced me to (I had my doubts, but the sweet and creamy offsets the crisp nori–very delish), but no matter, we filled up on their spicy tuna (pictured left), which is the best I have tasted anywhere because of the “secret ingredient”: sesame oil. Genki Sushi serves their unagi (freshwater eel) “naked” (pictured above right) with a packet of sauce that you squeeze on yourself to suit your taste. Some may say that’s ghetto, but if you love unagi, you’re usually a big fan of the sweet marinade and could always go for more sauce for your rice, so it’s actually kind of fun. Their deep fried squid tentacle tendrils are crispy and light with just a little bit of salty and citrusy seasoning on the cute bite-sized curls. This is the only sushi boat place I’ve gone to that doesn’t allow the fried treats to circle continuously until they grow stale and rubbery, thanks to conscientious itamae. It’s also the only place that serves consistent crispy nori too (get outta here sogginess!). And where else can you find uni (sea urchin) nigiri for less than $4? Go Genki!
885 Kapahulu – Honolulu, HI
1450 Ala Moana Blvd #2096 Mall Level – Honolulu, HI