Restaurant Review – Kai Sushi

I was majorly craving sushi this week! Luckily I happen to live around the corner from a sushi restaurant. Kai Sushi is located at 3819 N Southport. The restaurant is very intimate, with just a handful of tables and booths. There is a gorgeous sushi bar at the back of the space, lit with hanging industrial fixtures. Of course, they have beautiful fresh fish displayed in a glass case. The menu is small, but packed with delicious options. We started with an order of edamame. I love edamame and this didn’t disappoint! It was lightly salted and the beans were perfectly steamed. My mom isn’t generally a sushi fan, so she decided to order the ramen with tonkotsu broth. Tonkotsu is a pork bone based broth, so it has a very rich flavor. The ramen came topped with chashu (fatty slices of braised pork), nori (edible seaweed), a soft boiled egg, kamaboko (a cured, processed seafood product from Japan), scallions, menma (preserved bamboo shoots), bean sprouts, and of course, noodles. The broth was incredibly flavorful, perfect for a cold Chicago day. The pork was very tasty as well! I especially liked the bamboo shoots, they gave a lot of texture and a nice salty flavor to the dish. My dad ordered the Beef Yakiniku: steamed white rice topped with thinly sliced beef flank steak in a spicy/sweet sauce. This was fantastic! I immediately had food envy. The meat was so flavorful and the sauce perfectly coated the meat and rice, without being too heavy. I ordered the Citrus Salmon roll: fried shallots, jalapeño, red onion, and avocado topped with citrus ginger salmon and micro greens. I loved it! The texture of the fried shallots was amazing- I don’t think I’ve ever had them in a sushi roll before! The flavor of the salmon was marvelous. The marinade was very light, but really packed flavor into the fish. I would order this again in a heartbeat!

Kai Sushi is open Mondays through Thursdays from 11 am to 9 pm, Fridays from 11 am to 11 pm, Saturdays from 12 pm to 11 pm, and Sundays from 12 pm to 9 pm. Kai Sushi has another location in the South Loop, located at 1255 S. State St. Find more information on their website.