Japanese-born executive chef Kozo Kawada and his kitchen of three are known for their playful specials that complement Sen Zushi's large menu of traditional Japanese fare. The sushi bar dominates one wall of the long, sparsely decorated room. During pine mushroom season, you'll find the restaurant's trademark "Japasta" dishes enhanced with fresh cod roe, butter, and locally harvested mushrooms. Sea bream nigiri, spicy tuna tartare with avocado on tofu, lotus-root-and-prawn fritters, and baked oysters with motoyaki sauce are some of the other seasonal dishes worth a try. The polite, Japanese-trained waitstaff dish out quality, good-value cuisine to a room that's always packed with students. Sen Zushi is located downtown on a stretch of Fort Street that used to be called Antique Row, but is now known for its many food offerings.
- Joe Blake