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Restaurant

WTF, Sushi Katsu, a $26 AYCE Sushi Restaurant that is Decently Legit!?

From Michelin Starred Edomae Sushi in Los Angeles, SF, and Tokyo, to now we here, an AYCE in Colorado

In 24+ years living in California, I probably had only been to one AYCE (All You Can Eat) sushi restaurant which was up in San Dimas because there are some things you just do not do, or put things in places you are not supposed to, till now. #yolo

Amongst Asians in SoCal, the thing a lot of us do is “guess the owners ethnicity: hmmm, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, or ??” My guess is that this is a Chinese owned operation, and if it is, they’re doing a very good job.

Yea, I was never compelled to ever get my nipples pierced or to do AYCE sushi when I had Mitsuwa market as my casual go-to spot. Nor did I ever pass up on a couple dozen or more sushi bars with a wealth of hot MILF’s and cougars in it cuz Orange County/Newport Beach. BTW, all of which I wrote about in one of my most visited blog posts “the 10 Best Authentic Japanese Sushi Bars in Orange County, CA.”

The front of the house staff gets worked here, but the service was still really good (tip your waitstaff well).

Since I do not have my typical SoCal spots, I had to find an alternative to my typical once a week sushi routine that I used to have.

Saba (that fishy stuff), ikura (yea, fish do lay eggs), hamachi (“yellowtail” the same nickname I gave my ex), maguro (tuna), to “yellow stuff” (yea, I don’t know what that is) gunkan.

How does Sushi Katsu stack up to other sushi bars?

In the past year and a half, sad and sushi’less Greg has been looking for a sushi bar to satisfy his needs, and this is what he had experienced:

  • Go Fish (Broadway/Denver): all of the restaurants within this restaurant group have the BEST employees from the waitstaff to the managers. As for the sushi, it was really jus’ aiggggght, but at least they kill it with their over the top plating that they also use at Bronze Empire (BTW, I highly recommend Bronze Empire).
  • Hapa Sushi (DTC): Holy fock, if it were not for the bar, I do not know why I would ever come here because the entire menu is not edible. The sushi here is barely a step up from a gas station which blows my mind how bad the sushi can be in Colorado.
  • Sushi Kazu (Englewood): Kazu’san is past his retirement, and his ability to keep quality up on things such as with his sushi rice is non-existent (typically always overcooked and mushy). Except, it is one of the best places to go for decent sushi when the rice is right.
  • Iwayama “bro” Sushi (Littleton): bro, bro you watch the game bro? Well bro, the sushi chefs here have the ability, but the time I went, the sushi rice was old, hard, and dry. So if you do come here, maybe just stick with the Hawaiian plate lunch style grindz.
  • Sushi Ronin (Five Points Denver): I ran into an ex-Sushi Den co-worker here and the food was probably some of the worst and most bizzare food I have had in a long time that was being passed off as Japanese. The food is supposed to be izakaya style, but it’s a sushi bar and izakaya style food is non-existent, not to mention completely dead on a Sat night from 7-11pm.
  • Sushi-rama (DTC): since I live within minutes from here, I probably come here the most since I drink which means I’ll Lyft it on over or ride my bike. As for the sushi, yea, all rolls which are always inconsistently cut and the quality is sketchy as hell although the taste is good and the staff makes this place worthwhile.
  • and of course Sushi Sasa, Sushi Den, and Izakaya Den. All of which are good, Sasa being the best although on a recent visit, Izakaya Den killed it compared to anything I had ever had at Sushi Den.

I have only been to Sushi Katsu in Aurora once which I should also add was after several drinks. So I don’t know how much you want to trust my opinion, but solely based upon that one visit, the quality of ingredients, preparation, and price, Sushi Katsu is better than every single place I had listed (well except the very last few places listed which are Sasa and the Den’s) .

The dashi was very nicely done and it was most likely out of an instant udon package but who the hell cares because at least it tasted right.

What do I get for $25.95? Anything you want… anything? Yea anything, and we ordered a bunch of random things that they could have taken a ton of shortcuts on, or gotten sloppy with, but fortunately for me they didn’t slack off on any of it.

Yup, done right.

I tried to find something that I could crap on, but I could not find anything

This is what I ordered to really test them:

  • Shime saba (marinated mackerel): come on, a number of legit restaurants can’t get it right, so I was sure that they wouldn’t come through like how Hapa Sushi had failed miserably.
  • Ikura (salmon roe): a pricier ingredient, so I had expected they might take a shortcut here except they didn’t. Well, the portions are smaller, but you can just order more.
My favorites, like how you favor one kid over the other.

You think a random salad will be weaksauce or that they may slip up on it not tasting Japanese? Well you would be wrong because they aren’t play’n because they didn’t eff up here either.

I think this was their octopus salad (it having octopus is what gave that away).

They have salads.

Probably negi hama (yellowtail with green onions)?

Rolls…

Salmon skin roll?

…and even more rolls.

Tonkatsu and curry done right too…. yes, it’s possible to eff up on this, but they didn’t.

For the restaurants trying to do Japanese ramen, that right there is not ramen.

Tasty Korean kalbi just like any ajumma would do it.

Korean run sushi bars will give you a tell by having kalbi or kimchi on their menu, so maybe Katsu is showing their hand. If not, kalbi is also on the menu at Old Major in the Highlands although they charge upwards of $20, so if they are somehow Korean, they’re uppity Koreans.

Salmon kama (collar) is something that even pricey “sushi bars” sometimes can’t get right.

Any time you cut up fish, you’re going to have the collars and heads leftover which will either become the staff meal, or your meal. At Katsu, I was expecting it to be frozen and definitely overcooked and dry, but it was properly done the way I would have done it which is freshly broiled under the salamander for a few minutes, and we coo.

Well that about covers it except for a few other items I just didn’t take pics of cuz I was hungry…. oh, and next time, I guess I won’t be so afraid to take risks and try new places although putting things where they shouldn’t go should be heeded because nurses have already seen way too much.

Pros

For the quality, taste, preparation, and most of all price, you can not beat this place. So do not compare it to Sushi Den (Denver), Urasawa (Beverly Hills), Sushi Saito (Roppongi), or Kusakabe (San Francisco) because Sushi Katsu is out to provide an experience high on value.

Cons

The interior is drab, dark, and worn (felt like Tokyo Delves in Hollywood) although the attentive and quick service, along with the food, make you look past that all.

Sushi Katsu

2 Locations: Aurora and Greenwood Village
www.denver-sushi.com

Aurora
2222 S. Havana Street #H
Aurora, CO 80014
(303) 368-8778

Greenwood Village
9555 E Arapahoe Rd
Greenwood Village, CO 80112
(303) 790-8822

Mon-ThursFri-SatSun
11am-2:30pm, 4:30-10pm11am-2pm, 4:30pm-10:30pmClosed
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