Sushi Mazi

$$ Japanese

When one of chef Marc Suwansathien’s specialty rolls arrives at your table, don’t be surprised if you take a moment to wonder at its bright hues or find yourself baffled as to how he sculpted the filling into the form of a yin-yang. You may even ask if those deep-fried grasshoppers perched atop the “grasshopper sushi” are real (they are). And then there is the matter of how to gracefully fit a roll of such circumference into your mouth. In short, Suwansathien’s evident fondness for whimsy and over-the-top presentation are sure to captivate even seasoned Portland sushi fanatics.

The Super Rock & Roll, like many of Suwansathien’s creations, is an orgy of Japanese fusion techniques. Filled with nori-wrapped shrimp tempura and topped with spicy tuna, fried orange mango, and wild pink-and-red shredded crab, it’s as colorful as a fireworks display and tastes pleasantly sweet and balanced. In the Y-Tail Lover Roll, delicate layers of fresh, pale-pink yellowtail, jalapeño, and crunchy tempura are accented with a playful swirl of wasabi sauce and dashes of honey mustard.

And while sushi-loving herbivores must usually make do with only a small handful of variations on themes of cucumber and avocado, vegetarian diners at Sushi Mazi can savor such imaginative options as the Shiitake Roll, stuffed with teriyaki-glazed grilled mushrooms, tofu, and avocado, or asparagus tempura rolls with seasoned seaweed salad and spicy sauce. Whether the fried grasshoppers can be considered vegetarian, however, is your call.

Last updated: 07/30/2012