I was first acquainted with Haru a few years back on one balmy New York summer night. Feeling slightly frustrated at the thought of another Friday evening spent in the office (especially while my more fortunate 9-to-7 friends were on there way to the Hamptons), I decided to treat myself to a sushi dinner to make up for my lack of…ermmm….life. As I browse through the Japanese restaurant selection on Seamlessweb, my eyes landed on Haru. I placed my order and looked forward to the thought of at least a pleasant dinner to get me through the stack of 10Ks still unread on my desk.
But if life (or dinner) were that simple, then there would be no need for Prozac. The order arrived blatantly late (30 minutes after the stated delivery time) and the salmon and tuna ended up “cooked” from the warm summer weather during transit. I fell into despair – no yummy dinner and a long night of work ahead – this experience put Haru on my “Miss” list.
Flashing forward two years, I found myself with a dinner invitation to check out the Haru in Boston with my blogger friend Rich from The Passionate Foodie. Even though, Haru New York failed to impress, I wanted to give Haru Boston a chance (especially since takeout sushi can be quite different from sushi served on site – taste wise and aesthetically).
After we were seated, I started off with Haru’s special Cherry Blossom cocktail* (made with Svedka cherry vodka). The drink, although very aesthetically pleasing, had a faint cherry cough syrup after taste in the initial few sips. Ordering cherry flavored anything is always a gamble – it’s either really good or really Dimetapp-astic - this time, unfortunately, was the latter.
Luckily, the sushi (first course) more than made up for the slightly medicinal tasting cocktail. All five pieces (oh toro, super white fish, surf clam, king crab, and mackerel) were incredibly fresh and generously portioned – I especially loved the oh toro which melted in my mouth.
The lobster mango ceviche was HANDS DOWN my favorite dish of the night! The appetizer was beautifully and creatively presented - whole chunks of lobster, mango and sweet peppers were wrapped in the whitefish – and perfectly bite sized. The citrus sauce was a nice tangy touch and enhanced the flavors of the seafood nicely.
The lobster tempura* was served nice and hot – right out of the deep fryer! Although Rich thought the batter was a bit thick, I actually thought this appetizer was pretty tasty (but I do like my deep fried carbs a lot!).
The pan seared scallop with shiso tempura* was also another winner! The scallops was plump, firm, and well seasoned, and the contrasting shiso leaf tempura was nice, crisp, and airy.
I was starting to feel parched so I ordered another cocktail at this juncture in the meal. The Elderflower Cucumber Beefeater Gin drink was refreshing and definitely more to my liking.
On to the main course! I had two rolls – the strawberry whitefish roll topped with wasabi tobiko* and the Golden Passion roll (super white tuna wrapped around asparagus, shiitake mushrooms, cucumber and carrots, topped with yuzu tobiko). Both were delectable, but the strawberry whitefish roll completely blew me away! The crunchy fried whitefish enveloped by the rice was perfectly complemented by the sweet juiciness of the freshly sliced strawberries and the the wasabi tobiko added a nice "pop" to the mix.
At this point, I was pretty full (yes, even though sushi is technically known to be light and healthy, its possible to get full of sushi when consumed in large quantities) but I knew I couldn’t leave without a sweet treat to wrap up the amazing night. For dessert, I had vanilla, mango, and green tea mochi (sticky rice filled with ice cream), along with some hot green tea.
And with the last bite of my mochi, I wrapped up a sweet ending to a sweet meal!
*denotes menu items that are monthly specials
Haru55 Huntington Ave
Boston, MA 02199