Sushi Pop brings chic, upscale, downtown dining to Oviedo
Published: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Updated: Wednesday, February 2, 2011 15:02
It's hard not to notice the bright pink neon sign on Oviedo's West Mitchell Hammock Road.
The loud sign belongs to Sushi Pop, which opened its doors in December and has been intriguing surrounding residents ever since.
The inside of the restaurant feels like a chic part of New York, but no, it's still Oviedo. A nice change since most upscale sushi restaurants are only found in downtown Orlando. The place has a romantic vibe, great for spending a date night out.
The moment you walk in, the yummiest smell hits your nose and upbeat music fills your ears. The decor inside is warm and hip. Light purple and yellow walls surround the small space as well as a back wall with a japanese wave motif.
Hung on the walls are a few TVs playing anime and some very large, interesting manga art. The wall art doesn't take away from the space, although the TVs are distracting and out of place for a date night.
Plush white seats and dark wood grain tables offer a nice contrast. The table design looks like something from IKEA the white Italian leather seats were actually shipped from overseas. Large pink-lotus lanterns hang overhead and a long bar runs parallel to the dining space.
The wait to eat was no longer than thirty minutes on a Friday night and the front lounge near the bar serves as a great place to order drinks and look at the menu.
The staff is very welcoming and on weekends you might find the wait staff in Harajuku get-ups.
The drink menu is pretty extensive, offering well-known beers and some Japanese imports, plum wines and even cocktails.
Chef Chau and the chefs practice micro gastronomy which is a fancy word that means ‘applying scientific practices to the food they prepare.' All you need to know is that it will make your tummy happy. The well-informed waitress said that the chefs create flavor profiles, which incorporates the five main taste buds (sweet, salty, bitter, savory and sour). The balance of these flavors is what makes up a dish's flavor profile.
The main menu changes slightly with the season. There is a greens menu, as well as a cold- and hot-tastes menu to get you started.
The Pop Salad is of adequate size and the ginger dressing is not overpowering. For a hot appetizer, try the Buffalo Shrimp. These giant shrimp are covered in a smooth and tangy and not too spicy buffalo sauce and served with baby celery sticks and blue-cheese powder.
Hot Edamame is also featured on the menu in four flavors including sea salt, truffle salt, sautéed garlic and sauteed shicimi pepper and garlic.
The Zucchini Katsu is a great option for any vegetarians in the group. The lightly fried zucchini sticks are presented with spicy mayo.
The sushi menu offerings are unique the names are enjoyable. The Hot Mess roll is a great example of a dish with a flavor profile. The roll combines smoked salmon, avocado, tempura flakes with maple soy. On top of the roll is baked tuna, salmon, yellowtail, flounder, scallions and bacon.
The roll packs a heftier price of $14, but it's worth it if you want a treat.
If you aren't a fan of fish try the Oviedo Chicken roll.
The rest of the rolls are reasonably priced and there are a few classics, such as the Caliifornia roll, if you aren't up for trying something new.
In addition to the sushi menu there is also a fresh-fish menu and a kitchen menu which includes pricier options such as Umami Steak and Harvest Duck. Some of the popular items on the happy endings dessert menu are the P.M.S. which is a chocolate lava cake with peanut butter powder and salted caramel ice cream and the peanut butter and jelly sorbet.
The grape sorbet is made table side with liquid nitrogen and then topped with whipped cream, peanut butter powder and fresh grapes.
The overall experience was a good one and definitely recommended for a splurge night out.