REVIEW: Heart Rock Sushi – Japanese Restaurant (Ft. Lauderdale)

Submitted by: Allan M..; Saitama-ken, 2005-2007  Date Submitted: 07/19/2011

Name:  Heart Rock Sushi – Japanese Restaurant
Address: Gateway Shopping Center
1970 E. Sunrise Blvd. Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: Perhaps you’re wondering the difference between the “Happy Sushi” icon and the “Angry Sushi” icon. Well the
“Happy Sushi” are for places you could go to. The “Angry Sushi” are for places you should avoid. And now you’re wondering,
“Wow. What would it take for a place to get 5 Angry Sushi.?” Well ladies and gentlemen your search is over, behold the horrible Heart Rock Sushi.

You are welcome to a seemingly nice store front, interior and a sushi chef that welcomes you…with a host/hostess no where to be seen. We sat at the bar with a good view of both chefs and got our menus.

– First warning sign – menu has Japanese, Thai and other Asian dishes. Usually a sign of chefs that aren’t well trained in any.

The lunch specials are ordered and we wait. The waiter brings our drinks and goes about his business.

– Second warning sign – the sushi ordered from the daily specials come before our soup or salads even arrive, instead of with the other sushi we ordered.

– Final warning sign – the head sushi chef was more interested talking to the women at the sushi counter than making their lunches.

Our lunches arrive, in bento boxes and we dig in. It’s a combination of sushi and random dishes with our daily specials on the side. The waiter lied; the soup was from a packet and still powdery. The shumai was deep fried unidentified stuff with an odd taste. The hijiki salad was in a sickening sweet syrup. And the sesame Chinese noodles were so overcooked they were mushy and smeared onto our chopsticks. Something would have been said but the waiter disappeared for the rest of the meal and the sushi chef was back with the women. Now the sushi…

The sushi was utter ****. The California Rolls were guacamole rolls with a fruity cucumber aftertaste. The crab wasn’t even a
pencil thick and lost in the guacamole like avocado. The sushi rice itself had little flavor and fell apart when picked up. The tuna was dry and tasteless and disappeared into the rice making a squishy, tasteless mess. The salmon had little taste, was tough and “chunky” when you started eating. The sashimi were odd rectangle’s half the size of regular sashimi, all bland. The daily specials were the worse. The tobiko was tough and odd tasting, the Escolar had NO taste (zero, none, nada). And our other sushi had been cancelled – we were explained it could only be served fresh when the weekend deliveries come in, basically catching themselves in their lie about many of our sushi options being fresh.

Our final straw was when the bill was paid and we never got the change. It was kept for a 23.62% tip that they gave themselves
apparently apparently for the horrible food, the waiter that disappeared for most of the meal and the chef that enjoyed his ladies.

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REVIEW: Hiro Japanese Restaurant (North Miami Beach)

Submitted by: Allan M.; Saitama-ken, 2005-2007 Date Submitted: 7/2/2011

Name: Hiro Japanese Restaurant
Address: 3007 NE 163rd Street North Miami Beach, FL 33160 305-948-3687
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: The owner’s of the infamous and popular Hiro’s Yakko-san have parted ways and opened their own individual restaurants. This is part 1 of a 2-part review after the split up.

The “new” Hiro’s is a disappointment and riding the reviews of the old place. What’s left is a dirty restaurant with staff that
speak out any random Japanese words they know when a customer enters. Add this to the lounge and the neon lights and our group were uncomfortable from the start.

Their menu is still quite varied, with both sushi and traditional offerings. We ordered a selection of appetizers, sushi and a few
dishes we just had to try. The service was very good, in fact a bit annoying as we always had someone watching us or coming by as the restaurant wasn’t full.

As our food began arriving (we asked for it to come as it was ready) we dived in to see what the new standards were like. To put it
bluntly, the food was a blight. The sushi was mostly frozen or less than stellar quality, over priced with small cuts of fish, the rolls worse with loose rice and fish of worse quality. Some of the fish actually had a weird taste to it that we couldn’t place. The cooked dishes were no better. Tempura was oily, nasu eggplant was over cooked with a thick miso paste (and the wrong kind of eggplant), natto was warm and lost it pungency and the soups tasted prepackaged.

In the end, this incarnation of Hiro’s does provide a wide range of dishes of authentic Japanese cuisine and American faire but the
lack in quality and exorbitant prices make this place nor worth anyone’s time as the “good ol’ days” are gone.


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REVIEW: Joto Japanese Restaurant (Clearwater)

Submitted by: Nina M.; Kochi, 2006-2009  Date Submitted: January 11, 2011

Name: Joto Japanese Restaurant
Address: 2549 Countryside Boulevard, Clearwater, FL 33761
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review:  Sushi bar as well as traditional Japanese cuisine. All staff are Japanese speaking!!! They have delicious sushi, both authentic Japanese style and American style so there is something for everyone here. PLUS, the prices are affordable.


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REVIEW: Asaka Japanese Restaurant (Aventura)

Submitted by: Bahia S.; Gunma-ken, 2005-2007  Date Submitted: January 2, 2011

Name: Asaka Japanese Restaurant
Address: 20355 Biscayne Blvd Aventura, FL 33180 (305) 682-9331
Rating Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: The  food was good, but I felt that the price was quite high for the amount of food  we got and the service was poor, bordering on rude.  For a place that is  Japanese run, the attention to detail that I look for was absent and the  waitstaff was surprisingly inattentive.  We only ordered the Shabu-Shabu  so this review only deals with their Shabu-Shabu sets – it’s possible that we  didn’t order enough food for the number of people, but we didn’t find the  waitress very helpful, nor did she allow us to order more meat.  If I  lived nearby I would probably go again to try the other things on their menu,  but since I don’t I doubt that I will go back.  I was also disappointed  that their sodas were not fountain and therefore did not have free refills – I  wish it said that on the menu because I would have ordered something else if I  had known.

The decor was nice and the place was fairly clean, and their private room was a  good size for our party of 10.

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REVIEW: Marumi Sushi (Plantation)

Submitted by: Allan M.; Saitama-ken, 2005-2007 Date Submitted: December 17, 2010

Name: Marumi Sushi
Address: 8271 W Sunrise Blvd Plantation,  FL 33322
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: Look this place up on the Internet and you’ll see this is  hit-or-miss right down the middle. The reviews are either love it or hate it  with the best reviews from 2008 and the worst from 2009/2010.  Its tucked away  in a shopping center in Plantation that most people will miss and drive right  by, run by 2 Japanese chefs, one of which that used to work at Hiro’s  Yakko-san, with minimal decor but an O.K. sake selection. There known for their  fish-any-way preparation where they take a fish in season and prepare it a few  ways. The prices seem reasonable for some items, steep for others.

I went there for the first time with a large group that raved about this place and were personal friends of the owner. The chef
gave us  his recommendations. The Crispy Bok Choi, Fish in Chili Sauce and the Dynamite  rolls were all deep-fried in the same oil, which tasted like the tray hadn’t  been cleaned out and the oil wasn’t hot enough. The sushi were either sauce  with rolls (not joking – The Dynamite looked like a huge plate of baby vomit)  or rolls with limp dry fish (the Rainbow and Tuna with Cilantro rolls looked  and tasted like roadkill).

Both the chicken teriyaki and salad were swimming in  sauce – it was like the chef just gave us different sauces and threw sushi
rolls or stuff in it. All of the sushi and entrees went unfinished except for  the edamame and shumai. Some of us ordered individual sushi and literally got  one piece of sushi with the netta the size of a

Why a restaurant would give return customers/fans such a poor showing and not the signature fish-any-way or more sushi is beyond me.

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REVIEW: Wasabi (Seffner)

Submitted by: John M.; Nagano-ken, 2004-2005   Date Submitted: November 21, 2010

Name: Wasabi
Address: 11780 MLK Jr. Blvd Seffner, FL 33584
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: This strip-mall sushi place is not to be confused with the Japanese-owned Wasabi steakhouse and sushi restaurant located in New Tampa.  In fact, if you’ve been in the latter, merely stepping into the former would relieve any confusion.

This Wasabi is bright and new, and operated by Chinese and Thai.  It has the feel of an Asian fast-food place.  Orders are placed at the register and paid in advance, food is delivered to the table by the cashier.  The menu has the standard American sushi fare along with several Thai noodle and curry dishes.  But don’t expect too much in the way of actual Japanese food.  For fast Thai, it wasn’t bad.  Prices are reasonable for a quick lunch with an Asian flavor.  But make sure to get your receipt and check it (they default them to the trash).  I was overcharged for something and had no way to sort it out.

If you are in Seffner and dying for Asian food, this place won’t kill you, but I’d suggest driving the three miles to Brandon.

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REVIEW: Hiro’s Yakko-san (North Miami Beach)

Submitted by: Bahia S.; Gunma-ken, 2005-2007  Date Submitted: November 5, 2010

Name: Hiro’s Yakko-san
Address: 17044 W Dixie Hwy North Miami Beach, FL 33160 (305) 947-0064
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Favorite Dishes:

  • Mixed Salad – the dressing on this is fantastic!
  • Age Dashi Tofu – one of my favorites, tofu fried in a sweet stock.  They  did this exactly the way they do in Japan, and our friends who were first  timers to the dish they loved it as well.
  • Lotus Roots (renkon) – crunchy and in a delightful sauce, I have rarely seen  this in the USA.
  • Buta Nasu Miso Itame – Literally “pork eggplant miso stir-fry” this  had a thick miso sauce and the eggplant was cooked just right.
  • Rice – perfect rice!
  • Ginger Pork (shogayaki) – this was the  only dish that I was disappointed in.  While the sauce was good, the pork  was different from the kind they use in Japan and a  little dry.
  • Miso Soup – a full bowl of miso soup, not the little half bowl they usually  give you in American restaurants.
  • Sake – I am not usually a big fan of sake (nihonshu), but the selection we got  on the sake flight was surprisingly good.  Two of the three did not have  much of the aftertaste that I usually don’t like.
  • Yakisoba – their yakisoba was very authentic, which was refreshing after the  many in-authentic versions I have tried.

Review: This place is by far the most authentic Japanese  restaurant that I have been to outside of Japan.  After living in Japan  for a number of year, my husband I are constantly searching for something that  comes close to the food we loved in Japan – this restaurant does!

In the Japanese izakaya tradition, we ordered a number of small dishes to share  among 4 people.  Everything was good and most
things were extremely  authentic.

The restaurant was clean, the service was friendly, it  felt like you were walking into a little slice of Japan, with lots of
Japanese  and Asian clientele.  The price is also very reasonable.

I highly recommend this restaurant!

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REVIEW: Matsuri Japanese Restaurant (Miami)

Submitted by: Abby M.; Aomori-ken, 2004-2006  Date Submitted: November 5, 2010

Name: Matsuri Japanese Restaurant
Address: 5759 Bird Road Miami, FL 33155
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: Matsuri is located in the middle of the Red Bird shopping center (at the corner of Bird and Red roads). It’s a little hard to find, but well worth the search! Matsuri has the reputation of being one of the most traditional Japanese restaurants in South Florida. It is a favorite with the local Japanese community, and has a broad enough menu that anyone can find something to enjoy. Japanese menu also available.


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REVIEW: Miyako Restaurant (Sunny Isles Beach)

Submitted by: Bahia S.; Gunma-ken, 2005-2007 Date Submitted: November 5, 2010

Name: Miyako Restaurant
Address: 18090 Collins Ave Sunny Isles Beach, FL 33160 (305) 931-0455
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: If you are looking for fresh, authentic sushi then don’t go  to Miyako, but if you want a quick fix and the fun experience of all-you-can-eat  then this place isn’t bad.

The ordering process is a little confusing, in that you write everything on  slips of paper and the # of items that you want and give that to the server.   Don’t forget to put your initials and the table number at the top.

The sushi was pretty odd because the rice was just normal rice, without any of  the sushi rice vinegar that real sushi should have.  Overall the food was  edible.

Service was a bit slow.

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REVIEW: Su-shin Izakaya (Coral Gables)

Submitted by: Bahia S.; Gunma-ken, 2005-2007 Date Submitted: November 5, 2010

Name: Su-Shin Izakaya
Address: 159 Aragon Ave Coral Gables, FL 33134 (305) 445-2584
Review Type: Business (Restaurant)


Review: Su-shin Izakaya is Japanese owned and Japanese run.  When you walk in, they shout a welcome in English, much like the standard irashaimase in Japan.  On the right side the wall is lined with specials similar to traditional izakaya you find in Japan.

The food is generally good, with some items that stand out as very good and very authentic, and other items at good to mediocre.

The tonkotsu ramen is fantastic and very authentic.  The sushi is good. The miso eggplant is delicious.  Gyoza is very good.

The vegetable udon that I ordered was not great.  The vegetables they used were an odd choice and the broth didn’t taste like I am used to in Japan; it was a little bland.

We definitely like this place and go there at least once a month.  My husband’s Japanese co-workers chose to live near this restaurant and they are regulars.

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