365 Restaurants, 2 Kids, 1 Giant Fiasco
Today we decided we’d eat Asian food. It was either a Korean place we hadn’t eaten at before or sushi place we hadn’t eaten at before. Mina picked sushi. I knew she would. We went to Avocado California Roll and Sushi. Before we left, we had to pack up the sushi playset and Mina brought her crayons and activity book. I think she has caught on to the fact that she’s not going to be given anything to play with at Asian restaurants. They we put jackets on everyone and braved the cold to head to Firewheel for dinner.
When we arrived, we were seated right away. The kids thought that the fountain we sat near was pretty cool. Mina wanted to pose in her hat in front of the fountain. (This hat, by the way, was knitted by Crafty Asian Girl!).
Right after sat down, a woman came by, who may have been a manager or perhaps an owner with a little bowl of crayons and a folder where she keeps photocopies of two different coloring book pages. She explained to me one was for boys and one was for girls. They’re both Hello Kitty, but she pointed to the planes and told me that was why it was for boys. Understood.
Mina was excited to see this and decided it would be funner to color that. She put aside her coloring book she brought with her and gave her sushi to Benji. Ogre and I tried to read the menu, but Benji kept either getting frustrated with putting the sushi pieces back in the box or he was entertaining himself by throwing the pieces loudly on to the table. We went ahead and ordered some pan fried dumplings and Tempura Bananas as quickly as possible.
The waiter was very attentive and even when I absentmindedly looked around the restaurant, he came over to make sure I wasn’t searching for anything. The dumplings came out pretty quickly, which was nice because Benji had already spilled his water once, which the waiter cleaned up and was throwing his sushi and our waiter picked that up off the floor, too.
Ogre cut some up for Benji and we were able to order our own dinners. The waiter took pause when I told him that Mina would be having Tuna Sashimi. He thought that was the coolest thing for her too be so young and into sushi. I told him that our pocketbook thinks it’s great, too.
Next out came the Tempura Banana. It looked like dessert. It was deep fried breaded bananas with sugar and chocolate drizzled on top. Of course, Benji loved it. I had to keep making sure he was also eating the dumplings. I’m sure Benji was in heaven.
Mina was doing a great job coloring her Hello Kitty picture. Ogre was keeping busy refilling Benji’s plate as he was asking for “mo mo nana” (more bananas). I didn’t do much of anything.
Benji kept pointing at Mina’s sashimi, so we let Benji have a small bite…he didn’t like it and spit it out!
Dinner was pretty uneventful after that. Mina did not finish her sashimi, but we let her off the hook since she’d actually eaten at McDonald’s earlier in the afternoon with her grandparents. And, we got to eat it!
Mina brought a roll of Smarties with her and I told her she could have it after dinner. She brought those out and I nodded my approval to eat them…not thinking about the Benji consequences. He immediately started pointing at me saying, “can can” (candy). I told Mina to hold the Smarties under the table and eat them where he couldn’t see. Benji wasn’t really fooled, but gave in to the fact that he would not be eating can-can.
Benji saw Ogre’s Hawaiian Roll and began demanding “RYE! RYE!!!” (rice).
He was pretty persistent about it, and, since we already deprived him of can can, we ordered him a small bowl of rice. He eventually decided he was done and started having over his dishes. Once cute, now close to be a OCD development.
Mina went back to coloring and Ogre finished up our sushi. We ordered dessert and used the promise of ice cream to keep Benji quiet. Once we finished up our dinner, we went back out into the cold to head home.
They weren’t kidding about having rolls. The menu is a little confusing because they have different heading, such as Baked Rolls and Signature Rolls and will list the same roll in both, I kept thinking I was reading the same page. Be forewarned that they don’t have an extensive sushi or sashimi menu (I think they had salmon, tuna, yellowtail and maybe one or two other fish). It’s the combination rolls and sauces that is their star.
I ordered the Alexander Roll -except I don’t like salmon, so I asked them to add more tuna instead. I did not notice that they mentioned that there was yellow tail on it, and I still don’t think it did, but this was on the roll also. This roll had crab meat, avocado, and cucumber within the roll and tuna, yellowtail, eel (and normally salmon) atop it. It was very good. All of the fish tasted fresh and the cucumber and avocado were in good proportion. They had some kind of white sauce atop it, also, that was really good -slightly sweet.
Ogre ordered the Long Island Roll and Hawaiian Roll. The Long Island Roll was one of their baked rolls with scallops and spicycrab meat and a spicy mayonnaise and siracha sauce. He really liked it; I thought it was too spicy, but, then again, I’m a spice wuss. His Hawaiian Roll looked really good, but I did not try it. It had tuna and yellowtail atop the roll with crabmeat inside. He said he liked it and that it was comparable to your average Hawaiian Rolls at other places.
We ordered as “appetizers” (they were really Benji’s meal. Gyoza (Dumplings) and Banana Tempura. Ogre tried the gyoza and said it wasn’t the best he’s ever had, but it was good. We did not try the Banana Tempura. (I have this thing against trying the kids’ food before they’re done with their meal because I don’t ever want to shortchange their meal. I’m interpreting the fact that Benji ate ALL of it by himself to mean that they were pretty good. Come on, now, breaded and deep fried bananas with butter/brown sugar crumbles and chocolate drizzled on them?? When I saw it (it looks different than the picture), I commented that it looked like dessert, not an appetizer!
I also had miso soup, which was not that great. Ogre said it’s because they used the less fermented miso, which makes it less salty. I guess that was why.
For dessert, we had the Tempura Red Bean Ice Cream. It’s a small ball of red bean ice cream wrapped in angel food cake that is deep fried. This makes the cake taste like a doughnut, so the kids loved it.
I thoroughly enjoyed our service today. Our waiter was kind and gracious. He was soft spoken and provided good information. He seemed genuinely attentive and was laid back with the kids. After Benji spilled his drink and I requested a napkin, he cleaned it up for us. He made sure to entertain Benji’s desire to give him dishes. And he asked Mina how she liked everything that she ate. Even after we settled the tab and he was picking up the bill he made sure to let us know that if we needed anything more to not hesitate to ask. That’s excellent service.
Honestly, for an Asian restaurant and, specifically, for a Sushi restaurant, they were above average for kid friendly restaurants. First, they have a kids menu. Next, the manager or ?owner came over after she saw our little brood and brought a soup bowl full of crayons and a folder where she had photocopies of coloring book pages -one for girls and one for boys she explained to me. Impressive. The waiter was very gracious with our messy children and seemed genuinely laid back about their presence.
We thought that this sushi place was warm and friendly and had a nice casual dining experience here with pretty good sushi rolls. They do not have a lot of sushi per se, but they make a lot of different kinds of rolls. For us, living in Parker, Texas, it’s very convenient to have a place to go to when we’re craving sushi rolls (as opposed to driving half an hour to Sushi Zushi!). For good ol’ sushi, though, you’ll still see us at Sushi Awaji!
The total: $89.46 (includes one bottle of sake)
Childsplate.com chronicles our journey to find the perfect family restaurant. We are looking for restaurants with excellent food and a great attitude towards kids, even the whiny, cranky ones! We will be headed out to a different restaurant every single day to provide ourselves (and you) with some entertainment and good information about DFW area restaurants. We hope you will visit frequently and use our experiences to create some fun dining experiences of your own! Watch out, DFW, the Phipps family is going out to eat!