Izakaya Sakura – San Diego
Going to San Diego is always a treat. I have many friends here, from my University days, and good friends at that. And new friends.
July is always a must for a roadtrip to San Diego, because the SD Comic Con is this month. My brother and some of his friends have been on the staff for a number of years, and this is a perfect time to see them, and get a glance of all the latest and greatest film/sci-fi/cosplay that sends its fans into a frenzy.
But first, we must eat. And we must go to Sakura for izakaya. Valerie and Rob had been there earlier in the week, and I had been to izakaya earlier in the week too, but the plates are so small and the morsels so good that there is always room for more.
1. Crab cream croquettes – served well hot. So much, I burned my lips on the searing hot cream and dealt with the blister on my face all weekend. But worth it.
2. Grilled seabass – whatever sauce they use, like a sweet miso glaze, it transforms a delicious fish into a heavenly delicious fish. There is not enough of fish in this dish for three people. Next time – order a second one.
3. Spinach and uni. I love spinach, I love uni. We gobbled it all up.
4. Fried burdock root. Loved this. More please.
5. Eggplant gratin – it was cheesy and okay. But the other dishes were so much better that this was comparatively did not impress.
6. Seafood fried rice. Another acceptable but not wow-ing me dish. The seafood element was not terribly relevant. We had some of this leftover.
7. Cucumber and eel. Oh, this was a very good one. Valerie threatened that if we did not dig in and eat it fast enough, she would, so we dug in and finished it fast. I thoroughly liked that was eel was prepared differently than the sweet eel sauce way I often see in Japanese restaurants. Don’t get me wrong, I like that way too, but appreciated a little more variety.
8. Grilled tomato and bacon. Another very good one. The token vegetarian at the table ate it too, it was that good. The smokiness of the bacon came from the grilling.
Finally, I had an order of Chirashi Don, $22. It’s a handsome portion that would have been a meal itself, but can be a part of a larger meal if you skimp on eating all the sushi rice as I did. It also came with some miso soup and vegetable spaghetti. Oh, what, was I supposed to share this dish? I’m sorry, I did not.
The bill was about $90 for three people, after tax, before tip. A great value for all the good things we got. Parking is tough. Seating is tough if you want to dine during prime time. Just fyi.
Sakura (Convoy area)