It’s the offest of of season and the economy is in the Dumpster, but you wouldn’t know it by the crowd at Suzuki’s Sushi Bar in Rockland the other night. We walked in before 6 p.m. without reservations and were greeting by a near-empty room with “reserved” signs on almost every table. We were lucky; much later, and we likely would have been turned away.
Suzuki’s, on Rockland’s Main Street, has earned a reputation for quality and authenticity. It’s a small two-room restaurant. The front room, with sushi-bar seating and tables, is more active; the rear room more intimate. Oyster and seafoam painted walls and polished woodwork accent the front room (along with a long fishing tool–what exactly it was I don’t know. Meant to read the card on the wall on the way out, but it was behind another customer’s head by that time). From our corner table, we could glimpse the chefs at work.
Now we both like sushi, but I’m no sushi expert. The menu isn’t as extensive as other sushi bars I’ve visited, but it does offer a good selction of sashimi, migiri, and maki and a handful of temaki, along with a salads, appetizers, hot entrees, and noodles.
We began by splitting the traditional sushi assortment, which includes seven types of nigiri and one hosomaki ($19). That was a perfect starter. Next, a Breakwater maki roll (salmon, avocado, cucumber) ($7) and an order of Gyoza, the house-made pork dumplings($8). Both were excellent, but the pork dumplings were divine. Still a wee bit hungry, we finished with Keiki’s Favorite, a tuna, cucumber, tobiko, and scallion roll with spicy sauce ($9).
The entire experience was wonderful and made all the more so by a waitress who was prompt, efficient, and able to answer all our questions. Another plus: When the order was ready, the chefs made sure it went out immediately. So when our waitress was tied up at another table, another server brought our first sushi order over. I watched that repeated throughout the evening. Food doesn’t sit around here for even an extra few minutes; very important when dealing with raw fish and a nice touch for hot orders.
By the way, Suzuki’s also has a full bar, including a respectable collection of sakes (two hot, 10 cold). Oh, and do make reservations. This is one popular spot.