With restaurants in Hollywood, South Beach and Las Vegas – to name a few – it’s safe to say Japanese big-hitter Katsuya Uechi is a famous name on the US sushi scene.
The UAE version, previously in The Dubai Mall, relaunched at Jumeirah Al Naseem earlier this year, an area that is fast becoming a hub for exciting eateries, thanks to the excellent Il Borro, trendy Black Tap and soon-to-open Flamingo Room by tashas.
A sushi brand born of a partnership between chef Uechi and design maestro Philippe Starck, décor is (as expected) sharp and cool. Huge glass windows overlook the Turtle Lagoon, as well as the Burj Al Arab, lending a relaxed holiday feel to the restaurant.
The menu is extensive, so we opt for some maki rolls to start, which are the stars of the show. The Hollywood (pictured), a signature dish that nods to the brand’s Californian roots, is an excellent combination of tempura shrimp, avocado and spicy albacore. Salmon lemon rolls fare even better. We love the mix of flavours and textures, contrasting smooth salmon with crispy, fresh asparagus and tangy lemon. It’s a delight.
Mains are tasty enough, but don’t justify their high price tags. Dynamite lobster comes baked in a creamy, mushroomy sauce, with sadly no hint of the kick that’s implied by the name. And at Dhs215 for half a lobster, it’s not quite worth the price.
The black cod is deliciously sticky and sweet, with buttery meat flaking away perfectly, though let down by the side of super salty broccoli.
According to the team, Katsuya’s Japanese Kanji symbol katsu means “to win”. We’re not sure it does this in all regards, but if you’re after some top-notch sushi it’s worth a try (just skip the mains).
The bill (for two) 1x The Hollywood roll Dhs75 1x salmon lemon roll Dhs69 1x dynamite lobster Dhs215 1x black cod Dhs199 1x chocolate lava cake Dhs55 1x large water Dhs32 Total (including service) Dhs645
The bottom line Pleasant setting, but not all dishes live up to the billing.
Katsuya by Starck