Trying to find the best Sushi in Tampa? 10Best has you covered with a list of the top 10 options to choose from, each striving to achieve that delicate balance between Eastern traditions and Western tastes. While some restaurants focus on creating the ultimate sushi experience, others feature more extensive menus of Japanese, Chinese, and fusion cuisine.
If you're downtown, you might want to try the popular Jackson's Bistro Bar & Sushi, their extensive sushi menu goes great with the wonderful views of the downtown waterfront. In Ybor City you can try area favorite Samurai Blue. A great place to start an evening of partying in Tampa's entertainment district. Many of the best sushi options can be found in Tampa's trendy SoHo neighborhood where restaurants such as T. C. Choy's cater to the city's young and hip.
Great sushi can be throughout Tampa however, and many of the best restaurants are located in the quiet residential neighborhoods of Carrollwood and Town and County. So no matter where you are, you can find the perfect spot to satisfy your sushi cravings.
I Ai Sushi
A true hidden gem, I Ai Sushi's unassuming exterior reveals little about the comfortably chic atmosphere and outstanding eats within. Located in the Carrollwood neighborhood of Tampa, they offer a full selection of Japanese delicacies - including some that are hard to find, at very reasonable prices. Settle in with a warm bottle of sake and enjoy an appetizer of salted edamame or the more adventurous fried oysters. The outstanding sushi here is front and center; whether you are in the mood for creative Maki rolls or the freshest Sashimi around, you can't go wrong! (813-932-1111)
Jackson's Bistro Bar & Sushi
Set slightly away from the downtown bustle, Jackson's Bistro features a large and sophisticated menu with dishes ranging from hand-rolled sushi to an oak-grilled NY strip steak. The setting is romantic and upscale, featuring dark mahogany walls and candle-lit tables, but it's the views of Garrison Channel and the Tampa skyline that steal the show. If the weather is good, take advantage of their large outdoor terrace. Sunday brunch at Jackson's takes the buffet route, offering a turkey, ham and roast beef carving station, pasta station, sushi station and waffle bar. (813-277-0112)
Matoi Sushi and Korean Restaurant
A favorite spot for locals craving sushi, the Matoi Sushi and Korean Restaurant always hits the spot. Featuring a mixture of sushi and Korean dishes, it's the sushi that gets most of the attention. The restaurant offers a casual atmosphere that comfortable, if a bit dated. The creative menu features a wide array of great selections, always made from the highest quality ingredients. Be sure to ask your server about daily specials and other notable menu selections. The staff at Matoi Sushi and Korean Restaurant are friendly and professional and will ensure that your dining experience is a pleasant one. (8138713233)
Located in the Carrollwood area, Kaisen Sushi is an Izakaya style restaurant. This style of restaurant is popular in Japan for after-work drinks. Simple and minimalistic, this small sushi place draws rave reviews from its regulars, mainly because of the impeccable freshness and quality of the ingredients. The chef prepares classic rolls but creates new combinations as well. The staff is friendly and helpful, and the whole place has a comfortable, welcoming feel. Eel and squid are both popular, and there are even non-seafood selections for those friends who will never know the pleasures that sushi can evoke. (813-969-3848)
T. C. Choy's announces its presence in the SoHo neighborhood of Tampa with a large pagoda-style entrance. Elegantly appointed, this modern Asian bistro is a little fancy. Named for founders Tak and Chan Choy, Choy's plays to the desires and appetites of their hip, young clientele who tend to patronize trendy Tampa's SoHo area. The fare, while predominantly Cantonese, does issue forth a few delicious surprises like sushi, jellyfish salad, Japanese buckwheat pasta and clay pots. Those yearning for a bite of Chinatown should plan to stop by T.C. Choy's for lunch, when they feature marvelous dim sum specials. (813-251-1191)
Yoko's Japanese Restaurant
At Yoko's Japanese Restaurant, you'll find some of the freshest and most authentic sushi in town. Yoko's is known for its consistently good food and great service. Their extensive menu encompasses traditional dishes like Chirashi and creatively plated signature house rolls that you won't find elsewhere. If you aren't into sushi, there is a good selection of other Japanese favorites. As a native of Japan, Head Chef Daniel ensures that all the ingredients that go into each dish are up to par. He also helps cultivate this joint's jovial, casual atmosphere by frequently mingling with guests. (813-835-4311)
Origami Sushi is located in a Town and Country strip mall, but don't let the location fool you. Origami styles itself as the place where "sushi meets art," and with one look at their mouth-watering, beautifully crafted Japanese dishes, you're sure to agree. The emphasis here is on creativity and presentation. Start off with an appetizer of baked green mussels or pepper chicken skewers, and then get serious with the authentic raw dishes. All standard sushi fare is accounted for here, prepared with the freshest fish, and there are several rolls that incorporate surprising ingredients like conch and tilapia. (813-889-8898)
Conceived by the culinary tour de force behind Tampa Palms and Daily Eats, this ultra-contemporary eatery fits in well with the SoHo mentality – it's got "big city" style, it's sexy and cosmopolitan, and it's the type of place where folks like to be seen. Bright, fanciful cocktails and a cool, underwater motif recall the Pan Asian haunts you'd find in a place like South Beach, and the menu gives the concept of sushi a few surprising twists and turns. For example, the rolls, called "water rolls" are "clear" – that is, everything is rolled in thin rice paper – and each truly emphasizes perfect pairings of fresh fish and seafood. (813-514-4426)
Samurai Blue has two locations in Tampa, one in Ybor City and one in Westchase. The Ybor City location gets the thumbs up for cool ambiance, but both locations get high marks from savvy diners for the outstanding lunch choices. Their bento boxes, for example, carry everything from beef short ribs to sushi. If you're looking for something more visually familiar, their panko-seared crab cakes or teriyaki-salmon wrap sandwich pose tasty alternatives. Though prices elevate some at dinner, these fun-loving joints pack folks in, thanks to its sleek design, good service, and fantastic nigiri, sashimi and maki creations. (813-242-6688)
SoHo Sushi is a trendy, upscale Sushi Bar located in south Tampa. With a special emphasis on creative and fresh sushi and sashimi, the highly-trained chefs at this sleek, upscale locale produce dishes like the Green Menace roll (scallops and tempura chips wrapped in avocado) and the Red Devil roll (fried shrimp and lobster topped with tuna and avocado). Everything is magnificently plated and easily enjoyed in a convivial but still somehow intimate atmosphere. This spot is usually busy and parking can be a challenge, so visit during off hours or make a reservation if you don't want to wait. (813-873-7646)
About Skye Rodgers
Skye has lived in Tampa for over 16 years and spends much of her time exploring the region and discovering its hidden treasures. As a native of Canada, Skye has happily embraced the no cold, no snow climate and enjoys basking on the beautiful beaches of the Gulf of Mexico and navigating the waters of Tampa Bay.
When not out exploring Tampa, Skye is a freelance writer and public relations professional. She currently provides public relations counsel on a freelance basis to non-profits, social enterprises and small business.
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