I’m always looking for recommendations for good sushi in the area. When eating healthy, few dining experiences can be as customizable; you can stay strict and order sashimi, cuts of raw fish, or you can be a slob and order twenty maki (rolls) with rice, different types of fish, various sauces, etc.
Insightful blogger, Masticating Monkey, has been talking about a place nearby where the sashimi is generous. That’s all I really need to hear to check a place out, especially when I’m looking for a sashimi fix during the week while I’m training hardest.
Mizu Sushi is located at 3610 State Street in Schenectady. You might want to call this Colonie or Niskayuna. I don’t care what you want to call it. From Albany, take Central Ave all the way west until you see Metro Ford on the right; turn left into the strip mall, and Mizu is at the back.
I was joined this evening by my two college buddies, Rory and Brian, two people who appreciate decent Japanese food and sushi. As the table was set, Rory and Brian had soy sauce dishes that looked like miniature boats, and mine had a cute little stand to hold chopsticks. (Actually, that was set to be Rory’s, but he was late. You snooze, you lose.)
Before we ordered, our server brought us some complimentary spring rolls. They were unexpected, delightful, and piping hot.
My plan, as pretty much has become the norm, was to pick a special sushi roll as an appetizer and to have sashimi (sashimi regular – 15 assorted pieces of fish with a bowl of rice $16.95) for dinner. The roll I had my eye on was called “twin tuna roll” (spicy tuna and eel inside, topped with avocado, red and white tuna – $15).
While our sushi was being prepared, the server brought the ginger salad that came with my sashimi. It was fairly standard as far as these salads go.
My twin tuna roll arrived. It was very pretty and looked tasty.
The spicy tuna within the roll didn’t feel like the usual spicy tuna. I suspect that’s because the eel is incorporated into it. The texture of the white tuna on top was a little troublesome because it was very cold and close to frozen. Overall, it tasted very good.
Rory wanted me to snap a picture of his unagi (eel) nigiri appetizer because he thought it was unique that they served it with strawberries on the side.
My sashimi platter arrived, and I was pleased to see two things: a large portion for the price and cuts that clearly indicated that the chef wasn’t just lopping slices off uniformed pieces of different fish.
I enjoyed the salmon on the platter, which was a surprise because I seldom enjoy salmon at most sushi bars. The red tuna was also pretty good, as was the yellow tail and the red snapper. Actually these four fish were outstandingly good. They were all sliced in a way that the texture was nice, and, after a quick graze in derryX sauce, they picked up a little seasoning from the soy sauce and a good bit of wasabi.
The white tuna unfortunately suffered from the same issue as it did in the roll. It was right on the verge of being frozen. It was difficult to discern whether the fish had been frozen and defrosted or whether it was just sitting too close to the coldest part of the refrigerator. This resulted in a bit of an unfortunate texture. The flavor was just fine; it was just a little spongy due to the tiny ice crystals hardening the fish.
When the checks arrived, the staff brought us some sliced oranges. It was a good way to cap off the meal.
With the minor technical issue aside, the experience was very positive. The restaurant is very quaint. There are a few seats at the sushi bar and maybe a handful of tables. It was actually fun looking around the restaurant and finding things that seemed a little out of place, such as the bottle of cognac sitting on a shelf near the sushi bar; we couldn’t spot any other alcohol in the dining room. (We concluded that was for a specific preparation or was there in case the sushi chef needs a little jolt.)
While the special roll is priced within par for the area as is the sashimi regular platter, they seem dedicated to giving a larger portion than most, which is certainly great if you’re the type of person looking for value.