Sushi Hiro is the first restaurant that pops up when you search for sushi places near Rama 9. Though not that easy to find, tucked away from the entrance to The Shoppe mall, in the lobby of Belle condo, it’s almost always super-busy. On our last visit, there were about 30 people waiting to be seated before us, so we endured quite a wait.
The picture menu covers a broad range of Japanese classics—from sushi and sashimi to rolls, donburi (rice with toppings), grilled dishes, tempura, salad and nabe (Japanese hot pot dishes). Sashimi starts at a humble B270 for five slices of well-marbled salmon on a bed of thinly sliced radish and crushed ice. The freshness of the fish, and its good portions of fat, make for a melt-in-your-mouth dish.
Despite the queues, the food comes out thick and fast thanks to the eight sets of hands behind the sushi counter. We wouldn’t recommend sitting there, though, due to the faint fishy smell. Sushi prices range from B50 for tamago (grilled egg) to B450 for otoro (fatty tuna). The slightly grilled engawa (flounder’s fin) sushi (B180), salmon saikyo (B100) and the flavorful hotate mentai (scallop with flounder roe sauce, B190) are all pleasant in texture and aroma. The foie gras (B350) and unagi (eel) sushi (B100) are grilled just right and come perfectly matched with a wellseasoned, sweet sauce.
Not so successful is the crunchy salmon cream cheese roll (B760), whose wonderful texture of crisp tempura batter and mildly-flavored cream cheese is let down by an overly oily sauce. The salmon spicy roll (B480), on the other hand, is satisfyingly spicy even if it’s not filled with any premium ingredients.
On top of the complimentary custard pudding, the restaurant also offers a short list of desserts. The chocolate double cheesecake (B185), which they claim comes from the well-known LeTao bakeshop in Japan, is not a huge stand-out, though.
With its informative staff, Sushi Hiro certainly makes for a quality sushi experience that won’t break the bank, especially if you tailor your order around the many discounts and social media promos.