Enjoy the biggest, freshest selection at Aji Sushi & Grill

December 24, 2013

By Kathleen R. Merrill

The Bento Box (above) at Aji Sushi & Grill is a great lunch deal at only $9.95. The Double A roll (right), like the other sushi rolls at Aji, is a delicious work of art.  Photo by Kathleen R. Merrill.

The Bento Box (above) at Aji Sushi & Grill is a great lunch deal at only $9.95. The Double A roll (right), like the other sushi rolls at Aji, is a delicious work of art. Photo by Kathleen R. Merrill.

The spoiling of the customer at Aji Sushi & Grill in the Issaquah Highlands starts with the warm hand cloths brought to your table when you first arrive. It continues with impeccable service.

The restaurant has not only sushi but also numerous Korean dishes.

One way to judge a sushi place is by its California roll, one of the most popular menu items for people who love sushi, and for people who don’t. The California roll at Aji is beautifully made. You get eight large pieces for $4.95 and the blend of ingredients is perfect.

Another way to judge sushi restaurants is by how the chef handles maguro — or raw tuna. Aji offered Teka Maki, a tuna-only roll for $5.

It was exactly as advertised — slices of tuna inside sushi rice and wrapped with seaweed. The maguro was fresh. The rice and fish were perfectly balanced, neither one dominant.

There were several intriguing rolls available on the menu, but some of them can be quite expensive — not compared to other places, but rather according to an individual’s pocketbook. Rolls range from $4.95 to $18 each.

A meal then can be pricy, but “can be” are the key words. It can also be quite affordable.

The Bento Box at lunch, $9.95, was a great deal with four pieces of California roll, rice, miso, tempura, salad and two pieces of gyoza. However, the Bulgogi (Korean-style marinated beef) although flavorful, was gristly.

The tempura batter is light and crispy and only enhances the flavor of the items it coats.

The Double A roll consisted of deep fried asparagus wrapped in seaweed and rice, topped by slices of avocado. It was a delicious work of art.

The menu at Aji can be mind boggling, at 10 pages, with numerous sections including appetizers, salads and tataki, lunch menu, bowls, kitchen plates, various categories of rolls, sushi and sashimi platters, and happy hour (3-6 p.m.).

A visit in late November found that a menu change was imminent. The variety of dishes grew; the prices went down. The Korean dishes changed, according to our server, and there are more of them, so if you haven’t been in a while, you might want to schedule a visit back.

The newly reworked website says “Always satisfying. Always fresh. Always delicious.” We think you will whole-heartedly agree.

SnoValley Star Editor Sherry Grindeland contributed to this story. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

if you go

  • Aji Sushi & Grill
  • 1052 N.E. Park Drive
  • 369-8445
  • http://ajisushi-issaquah.com
  • Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.
  • Sunday 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Restaurant reviews are a regular feature of The Issaquah Press. Reviewers visit restaurants unannounced and pay in full for their meals.

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