Fast Food Sushi?

Restaurant: Sushi-Don

Location: 970 Monument St #118, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272. (310) 454-6710

Date: March 9, 2011

Cuisine: Japanese / Sushi

Rating: Not bad for a $20 lunch.


There seems to be a strange trend going on right now where top sushi bars are opening fast food or light branches. Sushi-Don is in my hood, and it’s owned by, or in some way executive chefed by, Sasabune (see my first and second reviews of that here). Sushi-Don is a kind of fast food version of it’s big brother Sasabune, where you have a simplified menu and reduced prices.

The menu is on the wall.

I went for “Combo B” the soup, cut roll, and 5 pieces of standard sushi.

The miso soup is exactly as you’d expect.

You can chose any cut roll, I went for blue crab. Left to right we have Maguro (tuna), albacore x2 with two sauces, salmon, and Hamachi (yellowtail).

The sushi itself is fine. It’s not fantastic, being perhaps 80% as good as that at Sasabune. This is no Sushi-Sushi (REVIEW) either, but then again, the above was $12. It’s certainly not icky mall sushi, and the chef made it in front of me.

I also ordered a scallop hand roll, which was tasty enough. Could have used a touch of yuzu 🙂

Sushi-Don is what it is. You can have a little light sushi meal here for $15, or you could probably get stuffed for $30-35. The equivalent food at Sasabune or Sushi-Sushi or similar would be at least twice as much. Sure the quality is better there. But at Sushi-Don you can also be in and out in 15-20 minutes. So I think it fills a niche, when one is in a hurry, often alone, and just want a tasty quick bite to eat.

Sushi Nozawa has tried a similar concept with SugarFISH, but that for me is even less satisfying, as it isn’t actually much (if any) cheaper than a real sushi bar, and they’ve eliminated the chef. My colleague reviews that HERE.