Komachi Japanese Restaurant

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Komachi Japanese Restaurant is the newest addition to the list of eateries atop The Hill. Originally located downtown, the authentic Japanese restaurant relocated in May, and is now tucked around the corner from the university’s bustling Marshall Street. From sake to teriyaki, sushi to any type of roll you can imagine, Komachi is the place to go for a great Japanese meal.

When to go: Komachi is usually busiest at dinner time, so if you’re looking to avoid the rush, stop by for lunch (served 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday) or order takeout after 4 p.m. Komachi is open 11 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday, and 4 p.m.-11 p.m. Saturday. The bottom line: If you’re craving sushi, Komachi is your best bet for lunch.

On Tap: Keeping with its authentic style, Komachi serves an array of Japanese beverages, including Oolong (Chinese Tea), Japanese green tea, aloe drink, and Asahi (Japanese beer). And we can’t forget the sake. With over a half dozen varieties to choose from, you’re sure to get that desired alcoholic buzz, sans the usual domestic beers. And for the nonadventurous folk, have no fear: Komachi serves soft drinks as well. Bottom line: You’ve got to try the sake. 

The Scene: Hanging lamps cast a soft light throughout the small, yet comfortable, restaurant. Paintings of birds and Japanese blossoms decorate the walls, and bona fide Japanese trinkets line the windowsill. With only a dozen or so tables, the dining area gives off a relaxed vibe where you can eat your meal alone or with a friend. There’s no wait for lunch, and the wait staff is quick to serve those during the dinner rush. Bottom line: Great place to catch up with a friend over sushi and California rolls.

Blue Plate Special: The menu provides a wide range of appetizers, entrées, fresh sushi and a la carte rolls where even the pickiest eaters can find something they enjoy. From age tofu and dumplings to the “Crunch Box” entrée (consisting of beef and chicken teriyaki, tempura, soup, salad and rice) — both crowd favorites — all items on the menu are relatively inexpensive and worth your hard-earned cash. Appetizers are about $6 and all entrée are under $18. Lunch specials are all under $12. And the teriyaki sauce is amazing. Bottom line: Order anything with teriyaki sauce. Once you try it, teriyaki will never be the same.

The Crew: Because of the small dining area, the wait staff usually consists of one waiter for lunch and two for dinner (on a busy evening). But don’t let those numbers worry you. The waiters are friendly and the food is served hot — five seconds are the cook’s bell signals it’s ready. And the waiters are very attentive, in a nonhovering sort of way. Bottom line: Tip well because the waiter you have will most likely serve you the next time … and the next time, and the time after that, too.

The Crowd: Komachi appeals to a wide variety of sushi-loving individuals. At any given time, you can find a group of grads, undergrads, professors or local medical professionals at Komachi’s tables. Dress is casual. Bottom line: Come in your jeans, your khakis or your hospital scrubs … you’ll fit in no matter what.

The Deets: Komachi may be off the beaten path at 727 S. Crouse Ave. (in the alley leading to Chuck’s), but the quaint restaurant — with its variety of sake, delicious teriyaki sauce and relaxed atmosphere — is worth checking out the next time you crave some real Japanese cuisine. Bottom line: Komachi’s is the place to go on your next lunch date with friends.

Review by Caitlin Donnelly


727 S. Crouse Ave.
Syracuse, NY 13210
(315) 476-2400

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