Monday, August 20, 2012

Izakaya Seki

For quite some time, I've been looking forward to the opening of Izakaya Seki, a Japanese restaurant located near V St. and 12th NW. It finally opened a couple weeks ago, so my wife and I went down to check it out. It's definitely a cute little space; if they offered happy hour specials, I might swing by after work, and it look like it'd be nice for an early date. Downstairs, they have bar-style seating, and upstairs they have table seating.

The menu is small plates, and it's focused more on Japanese pub food rather than on sushi. In fact, there are only a few sushi dishes on their menu, and no rolls. On the other hand, they have a rather extensive list of sake and shochu, so there's that. We ordered the Sashimi Special, the Uni starter, the Kushikatsu (deep-fried pork belly), and the Kyona salad (arugula-based). We both agreed that the Kyona salad was the best of the dishes. It was fresh and bright, but the egg and tuna shavings gave it a nice savoriness as well. The pork belly, on the other hand, was the worst. Underneath all the breading, you could barely taste the pork belly, and it was seriously chewy. The sashimi and the uni were both above average, but somewhat expensive, even for the fairly large quantity you got. The selection was good, with tuna, octopus, squid, yellowtail, flounder, and shrimp. The octopus was a highlight, beautifully tender, and the shrimp melted in your mouth.

The service was attentive, if not especially knowledgeable. We both enjoyed it, and will probably go back since it's right in our neighborhood, but there are probably better places for izakaya-style eating in DC.

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