Rainbow Roll - Sushi Inside Out

Rainbow Roll - Sushi Inside Out

77 Irving Pl. Gramercy Park
(212) 420-1419 –

Although trend-chasing foodies at the beginning of ’09 may have declared that sushi is out, New Yorkers continue to hunt down fresh, mouth-watering tender bits raw fish flesh nestled in immaculate rolls of toothsome rice. I’m certainly among them.

Lucky for me, my neighborhood is graced with more than handful of places within a ten block radius that helps me satisfy those urges in all of their manifold expressions. Choshi is the place I go to for friendly neighborhood atmosphere and when I’m having a hankering for some solid sushi and need to sate a serious appetite.

Choshi also happens to be the home to the best inside-out rolls in town. For new sushi initiates, inside out rolls differ from regular sushi rolls by virtue of having the fish wrapped around the rice.

Choshi’s menu of inside-out rolls is both extensive and well chosen. My favorites are the rainbow, dragon and typhoon rolls, each at the modest price of $12. The rainbow roll featured above is made with avocado and crab meat wrapped in a thin layer of nori and a wide outer layer of sticky, toothsome rice, topped with thick, meaty slices of salmon, tuna, yellow tail, white fish and shrimp. Many of the choices feature mayo as the ingredients. I’m not a fan of mayo with sushi so I simply request them without it and it has never been a problem here.

The quality of the fish consistently fresh, fragrant, expertly prepared, with palpable aesthetic sensibilities. The only rare departure from this experience has been with the salmon. I’ve only noticed it lapsing from its otherwise high standards once, and I’ve ordered it here well over twenty times in the past couple of two years. These rolls are generously sized and have perfect rice-fish proportions. Ordering two of these rolls after an appetizer here, has often left me with a happy gut-busting feeling.

While the decor needs something to be desired and could use a good update, pricing is eminently reasonable for the quality and the portions. Service is courteous and accommodating.

Sidewalk seating entails long waits in the spring, but for delicious, affordable sushi on a charming old neighborhood corner they are well worth it.

Vegetable Tempura

Vegetable Tempura

Tempuras are consistently fresh and crispy and also come in hearty portions here.

The week-day lunch special, priced at an average $13, is also a great deal.


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