Kuma Sushi + Sake Now Softly Open on Polk

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Kuma Sushi’s Cory Jackson and Ryo Sakai. Photo via Facebook.

Color me impressed. Back in March, I wrote about the upcoming ~KUMA SUSHI + SAKE~, from best friends Ryo Sakai (Pink Zebra, Domo) and Cory Jackson, and they reached out to let me know they are now softly open on Polk. Nice work, guys. The official opening is this Thursday August 17th.

They are opening a neighborhood-friendly sushi spot, designed to work for all kinds of budgets, while not skimping on quality seafood, with much of it local (from TwoXSea). The menu features small plates and salads to start, like sakekawa ($8), fresh arugula leaves and crispy salmon skin dressed with ponzu; chawanmushi ($9), a savory egg custard with shiitake mushroom, smoked gouda, and crab; and there are some tasting spoons for those who love those one-bite wonders.

You’ll also find nigiri, sashimi, and maki rolls, from a California roll (with real crab) to some kookier ones, like the Hey Girl ($14), a tempura shrimp roll topped with layers of tuna and avocado, spicy mayo, and unagi sauce. You can sit at the sushi bar for omakase, which is definitely fun with Ryo driving the bus. Vegetarians will also find some selections.

Local and Japanese beers, an ever-changing list of sakes, and wines are available. There’s a custom sushi case at the counter, and look for the shou sugi ban wood at the entrance (it’s a Japanese technique of charring and preserving wood).There are 18 seats, with 12 at the bar, and no reservations. Hours are lunch Tue-Fri 11:30am-2pm, and dinner Sun and Tue-Thu 5pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 5pm-11pm. Closed Mon. 1040 Polk St. at Post.