Sushi One’s signature long roll is finished with a blowtorch.
Sushi One’s signature long roll is finished with a blowtorch.

Sushi One
4944 S. Virginia St, 838-2335

Another night in Reno, another sushi bar to review. On this occasion I invited friends and family—all female—to give Sushi One a go. It’s $17.95 for an all-you-can-eat lunch, and $23.95 for dinner. As I’m a big fan of nigiri, I was glad to have some lady long-roll lovers along for the ride.

From a menu of 11 appetizers, we sampled yakiton, gyoza, baked mussels, shrimp balls and miso soup. The yakiton’s split wonton rolls were drizzled in sweet sauce. The pork potstickers were piping hot with just a hint of spicy heat. Rather than being served on the shell, the perfectly cooked mussels were two to a large spoon, dressed with broth, kewpie and sriracha. Balls of chopped shrimp—lightly fried in tempura—were a treat, retaining plenty of shrimpy texture and flavor. The miso soup was barely warm and had mediocre flavor.

Moving on to simple nigiri bites, we loaded up on tuna, seared tuna, snapper, yellowtail, salmon, smoked salmon, spicy salmon, seared salmon, freshwater eel, mackerel, scallop and octopus. The rice-to-fish ratio was excellent, with big cuts of fish and lightly seasoned rice that held together. Everything tasted fresh, including the mackerel. As an oily and easily spoiled fish, it’s my common test for food handling and quality when trying a new sushi bar. The smoked, seared, and spiced items were good, especially the smoked salmon, which had a serious amount of smoky flavor. Scallops were lightly cooked as requested, and the big slices of octopus were tender.

Complex nigiri followed, including upside down shrimp with crab mix. An order of Mickey featured seared tuna, avocado and crab mix. The Minnie had yellowtail, avocado and crab mix—and the Donald came with salmon, avocado and crab mix. The Sumo featured charred salmon topped with a strip of broiled American cheese. The grilled fish was fine, but the processed cheese left an aftertaste that took a fair amount of pickled ginger and sake to wash away. Interesting to try, but probably not something I’d repeat.

A crystal shrimp hand roll looked impressive, with long pieces of battered crustacean blooming from the open end of the roll. Unfortunately, it lacked much in the way of sauce or seasoning and was something of a dry, crunchy disappointment. It took a fair amount of shoyu to get it down. Luckily, all the long rolls the ladies ordered were much better.

The Kohala roll’s mix of crystal shrimp, salmon, pineapple, cream cheese and crab mix surprised me. It had a good blend of crunch, sweet and spice. The Lucky Clam roll’s tempura calamari, crab mix, shrimp, cream cheese, avocado and spicy crab mix would have been better without the big blob of naked cream cheese on top. A Macho roll—crystal shrimp, cream cheese, jalapeño, avocado and scallion—and a T. Rex featuring hamachi, avocado, cream cheese, scallion, macadamia nut and crab mix both made for better combinations.

Tuna, spicy tuna, hot sauce and scallion filled the Tuna Blossom, probably the spiciest roll of the bunch and one I really enjoyed. But the Disney roll—essentially Mickey, Minnie and Donald nigiri combined in a single roll—was the absolute winner for flavor and presentation. With tuna, salmon, yellowtail, avocado, crystal shrimp, cilantro, cream cheese, crab mix and scallion, it was neatly separated into three geometric stacks finished with fresh herbs.

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