Sushi comes in all shapes, sizes and styles. That much is for sure.
This is not Sarasota. Walk into the entrance of Yo! Sushi in the University Town Center and you’ll probably have the same feeling sweep over you. You’re transported. But, you’re not really sure where. Tokyo? NY? How about London? That’s where Yo! Sushi was born back in 1997.
By this time we’re all pretty familiar with the “sushi” experience. Sit at a table or the bar. Peruse a gigantic menu of options. And then mark your selections with a well used pencil. Mostly, we’ll order something we recognize. Maybe, we’ll throw in a wild card or two just for a tryout. Make no mistake about it. We have a lot of excellent places in town to enjoy an evening (or afternoon) of raw fish consumption. But, there is only one place in town to have the “Yo! Sushi” experience.
Yes, that’s a conveyor belt. And, yes, that’s your sushi being transported to you on that conveyor belt. Around they go, just pick off one or two that look good. They’re all color coded by price to make things super simple. Oh, you don’t have to worry about your nigiri traveling around the restaurant for seven hours. All of the dishes are time stamped. They’re removed and trashed if they don’t find a good home in a timely manner.
OK, OK, I get it. You’re saying “what the…?” I’ll concede, this isn’t Sukiyabashi Jiro. It’s not Nobu Matsuhisa. And, it’s not even JPan. But the beauty is they don’t try to be. This place is a COMPLETELY different thing. This place is a much about fun as it is about fish!
It’s small, 60+ seats. It’s lively, a little noisy (that’s OK) and young. Lots of families. Lots of 20 & 30 somethings busy chatting and grabbing bowls as they make their way around the restaurant. Now, you’re saying that’s all great. BUT, what about the food? Excellent question. Let’s let your eyes answer that question shall we.
Nanbanzuke. Sweet and sour yellowtail with pickles and peppers on rice. This is packed with flavor and has a pretty good amount of heat too.
Right, well, you wouldn’t expect wings at a sushi place, but, here they are. And, they’re pretty good. Yo! Sushi is not going to replace the wings at your favorite sports bar anytime soon. But, they’re super crispy and oddly additive.
Let’s talk rolls. The Ginza (above) is new on the menu. Fresh salmon, cream cheese and cucumber with arenkha caviar, teriyaki, sriracha, mayo and crispy shallots. Lots going on here and it all works deliciously!
Yes, you can get saki and an ice cold Japanese beer. OR, you could complement your sushi selections with a Shirakiku drink. You just grab one off the belt as it rides by!
Dessert? Chocolate Mochi anyone? It’s a soft rice based outer shell that is filled with a rich chocolate and coconut ganache center. This is pretty unique. Not at all what I thought it would be like. The deep chocolate flavor should satisfy any post meal sweet tooth.
They do have a regular sushi menu that you can order from if plucking dishes off the belt isn’t your thing. Their sushi chefs will expertly prepare it and have it brought right to your table like any traditional sushi spot.
This is a low pressure way to eat sushi. Also, great for beginners and ideal for families. Your kids will love this place! So, let’s review. Good sushi, lively atmosphere, fun experience. Looks like we just checked all the boxes!
140 University Town Ctr. Dr.