Austin Sushi News,  June, 2001



1. Kenichi's opening salvo
2. Archival footage:  Austin's sushi scene circa 1994 !!!
3. Austin Chronicle Restaurant Poll
4. Cell Phone Access To The Latest Sushi Ratings

1.  Kenichi's opening salvo

Many of you have been following our hype machine as we simultaneously announced
and drooled over the opening of Kenichi, the swank new sushi bar
located at 5th Street and Colorado.

* Yes, local builder-heroes Dick Clark Architecture did a fantastic job on
the structure.
* Yes, it's located downtown where we needed a sushi bar to compete with
* Yes, we love their appetizers and dinner menu that provide
a nice counterpoint to their sushi selections.
* Yes,  everyone I know is turned off by their ad campaign ("When
we're not dining at Kenichi, we're xxxxxxxx ." [insert photo of
smiling white people here]).
* No, we don't mind the strange mix of 70's album rock and 80's power
ballads they play on the music system.

But all that stuff aside, it's a tough call to say whether or not Kenichi
has knocked
Musashino from the top spot as Austin's premiere sushi destination.  While the
ambiance and non-sushi menu at Kenichi has Musashino beat, we still think
that Musashino's sushi bar crew, led by head chef/owner "Smokey," has
maintained a consistently high standard of sushi longer than anyone in
town. Further, Musashino has a more varied sushi selection, especially
their roll menu, which we think has a much better selection than Kenichi's.
Look for more discussion about this in the next issue of Austin Sushi News.

Meanwhile, the Kenichi web site ( has been down for
quite a while now. We miss those mouth-watering pix, and we're
wondering whether they forgot to renew their domain name
registration which expired on May 26th (?).

2. Archival footage:  Austin's sushi scene circa 1994 !!!

Hey kiddies, remember life before the web? Well, gather around
as uncle Fishface reminds you that Usenet News (AKA "netnews") was the shit way
back in 1993. And that's where "The Austin Usenet Guide to Sushi"
was born.  We dug through mounds of festering netnews files to bring you
one of our delightful gems from 1994:

3. Austin Chronicle Restaurant Poll

Usually we agree with the critics -- we *are* the critics -- but the people
spoken, and they've spoken correctly.  In the May 25th, 2001
issue of the Austin Chronicle, the annual Restaurant Poll appeared,
and, while we agreed with the Reader's Choice for best sushi bar (Musashino),
we were puzzled by the Critic's Choice (Osaka). This prompted a
visit to Osaka to see if we were missing anything.  Nope.
We're still puzzled.

Interestingly, Osaka didn't even make the top
five list of the Reader's favorite sushi bars (though, statistically, it's
hard to say whether the ballot box gets stuffed or not) -- Runner-up: Kyoto,
Honorable Mention:  Kenichi, Ichiban, Sushi Sake, Umi Sushi

This isn't the first time that the Chronicle critics have led us
astray. Last year's critics' pick for best sushi, Korea Garden, also left
us shaking out heads.

Critic's Picks:
Readers' Choices:
4. Cell Phone Access To The Latest Sushi Ratings

As always, if you've got a compatible cell phone (Spring PCS'
Wireless Web,  AT&T's PocketNet, or Verizon's Mobile Web),
point it at our list of Austin sushi bars (
Push a button to automatically call your favorite sushi bar. Handy!