Spicy & Sweet: RA Sushi’s New Dishes

When planning an evening out in Atlanta, there’s a new reason to check out RA Sushi.  Numerous reasons, actually — the Midtown hot spot known for its new take on traditional Japanese cuisine is offering a variety of new dishes and cocktails.  I was recently invited for a taste.

While looking over the new menu I sipped on an Emperor’s Cucumberita ($8), one of RA’s nine new cocktails.  It had Patrón Silver and Patrón Citrónage shaken with fresh lime juice and yuzu sour, served with fresh cucumber slices.  It was pretty strong so I didn’t order a second drink, though I plan to go back for the Ginger Blossom (Hendrick’s Gin, St. Germain, muddled strawberries, pink grapefruit, lime juice and a splash of ginger ale, $8).

I started with the Shishito Peppers ($7), which I loved from the first bite.  The long green peppers are sautéed and served in a spicy Asian seasoning.  The sauce gives the peppers a great hot kick.  My mouth was on fire (in a good way) and I couldn’t resist coating the peppers with the extra sauce at the bottom of the bowl.  If you’re a fan of spicy food you must try this dish.

What RA Sushi does best are its unconventional rolls.  Sure you can still order a tuna roll, but no evening at RA is complete without one (or several) of the specialty rolls.  In addition to their creative names and colorful presentation, the rolls are great for those who don’t eat seafood or sushi novices who aren’t ready for raw fish.

My favorite of RA’s new rolls was the “RA”ckin’ Roll ($13), which had kani kama crab and cream cheese that was rolled in rice and seaweed and lightly tempura battered.  It was topped with tempura fried shrimp and guacamole, and served with a creamy gingery teriyaki sauce.  Also good was the Pacific Roll ($9.50), a spicy mix of albacore, cilantro, jalapeño and cucumber that is topped with fresh avocado and mango salsa and finished with red beet tempura bits and sautéed cashew nuts.

From the rolls I moved on to a new entrée: Lobster with Garlic Sugar Snap Peas ($17.50).  The lobster is sautéed with garlic, sugar snap peas and shiitake mushrooms.  The dish is really flavorful; I enjoyed soaking up the tangy sauce with the accompanying steamed rice.

I ended the meal with the Sweet Mochi Trio ($7.50).  Mochi is one of my favorite Japanese treats.  It is a soft rice cake that has a sweet filling, either a paste or ice cream.  RA’s mochi has three kinds of ice cream: mango, strawberry and vanilla.  I loved the combination of flavors and textures, the chewy sweet rice outside with the cool creamy ice cream inside.  And there’s something about eating ice cream with your hands that makes it taste better.

Starting with spice and ending sweet, RA Sushi’s new dishes offer a great combination to kick off a night out.

RA Sushi Bar and Restaurant is located in the 1010 Midtown building at 1080 Peachtree Street in Midtown Atlanta.  (404) 267-0114

Open for lunch and dinner seven days a week.
Happy Hour 3pm to 7pm Monday through Saturday, with sushi, appetizers and tapas ranging from $2 to $7.

The new menu items are available at RA Sushi locations throughout the country.