Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Irvine- Kula revolving sushi bar

Kula Sushi Bar
2700 Alton Parkway, Suite 133

Irvine
, CA 92606
(949) 553-0747
kulasushibar.wordpress.com/

I first read about Kula from Eileen Likes to Eat.  The idea of a revolving sushi bar made me super excited.  I know that they exist, but I've never had the pleasure of going to one.  The cheap prices made me want to try this place even more.  It's located in the same plaza as the bakery I frequent, 85C.

So Boyfriend and I took a short road trip to go check it out. It looked even cooler in real life.  Basically there is a moving belt that runs around the sushi restaurant, carrying small plates of food.  You can sit at the bar, or at the tables inside, which also are aligned up against the revolving sushi bar. Here's the view from the sushi bar:

Here's the view from our table:

Almost everything is $2 a plate.  There are some things on the menu that you can order as well that aren't on the sushi bar, such as hand rolls and ice cream.

The $2 a plate makes it easier to try everything without worrying about spending too much.  Which was a good thing for me because seeing so much food pass right before me kept making me forget that I was paying for each plate of food. I kept thinking I was at a buffet. hehe. And it was really hard to resist passing up on such pretty sushi plates.

You stack your finished plates on your table, and at the end, the waiter will count the plates and add up the total. Now onto the food.  With the cheap prices, I wasn't expecting top quality sushi.  I was just hoping for some good tasting cheap sushi. 

We were given fresh wasabi with our food.  I was surprised that they served fresh wasabi. Boyfriend really enjoyed the kick of the wasabi.

Now onto the food:

Crunchy roll:

It was pretty tasty.  I enjoy crunchy rolls.  The sweet sauce, the crunchy toppings and the shrimp tempura inside.

Seared scallop:

The scallop was lightly seared, allowing you to taste both cooked and raw scallop.  I liked this.

Crunchy salmon roll

A crunchy roll with cooked salmon inside. Not exactly my favorite but mainly because I'm not a big fan of cooked salmon in my sushi rolls.

Spicy tuna roll:

This was a pretty standard tasting spicy tuna roll.

Spicy tuna with quail egg:

I loved how this dish looked and I've never had a raw quail egg so I was excited to try this.  Unfortunately, I don't know what I did with my quail egg. I think I might have swallowed it whole because I didn't taste any yolk.  Next time I should separate the egg yolk out so I can taste it.

Crunchy rice topped with imitation crab

I thought this dish was pretty unique as I've never seen it before.  They had a couple of variations of toppings on the crunchy rice.  It wasn't what I expected at first, but I ended up liking it.  The rice is really hard and chewy and a bit salty, but I think I would like to snack on something like this.

Uni

There was only one of these per $2 plate. 

Spicy tuna crunchy roll.  Boyfriend liked this a lot

Rainbow roll:

I didn't try this. Boyfriend said it was just okay.

Salmon roll:

I don't think I tried this either.

Albacore

Botan ebi

 

This was my favorite dish. The shrimp was sweet.  The head was deep fried so that you could eat the entire head.

Octopus (Tako)

 

Chewy, but about the same quality as ones I get at buffets.

Sake soy marinated tuna

Another dish I've never seen before.  I don't quite remember how it tasted

We ended with the mochi.  I've never had this type of mochi, but i enjoyed it. I mochi pieces were soft, gel like and chewy.  The peanut powder added the sweetness needed for the mochi.

I had a fun experience.  I once saw a revolving sushi bar on a Japanese cartoon and I've been wanting to go ever since.  I wish there was one in San Diego.  My attention definitely was on the revolving sushi bar the whole time.  Even after I was completely full, I kept staring at the plates passing me by.  Boyfriend had a hard time getting me to pay attention to anything else. I can't wait to go back and try some of the other plates we didn't get to sample.

 

7 Responses to “Irvine- Kula revolving sushi bar”

  1. 1

    Faye — October 7, 2009 @ 10:11 am

    Oh that looks like so much fun! The portion for $2 seems pretty decent.
    I went a revolving sushi once in Little Tokyo LA – it was so-so.
    Is there one in San Diego? I think i saw one in PB years ago.
    Wonderful pics Miss Kirbie! Now you’re making me want sushi for lunch…

  2. 2

    Kirbie — October 7, 2009 @ 12:47 pm

    I heard Kubuki Sushi in PB has a sushi boat. I’ve never been though. Too bad the one in Little Tokyo was just so-so. The cool thing about Kula is the entire restaurant is based on this revolving sushi bar theme. Some restaurants have it only at the bar, but this one runs across the entire restaurant and most of the menu items are on the belt. I also like how they have so many nigiri offerings.

  3. 3

    Faye — October 7, 2009 @ 2:32 pm

    I read some reviews on Kabuki and saw some pics online – but yeah – it looks nothing like Kula! When i saw your pics for the scallop and amaebi I was really shocked. I’ve never seen the higher priced items on the revolving sushi belt thing. And the times I’ve tried revolving sushi, the quality of the sushi hasn’t been all that great.
    Question (I just realized this after re-reading your post) – what’s the difference b/c amaebi vs botan ebi? I’ve never heard of botan ebi. Are they both the same?
    I hope to find a Kula here in SD soon. That would be awesome.

  4. 4

    mark — October 8, 2009 @ 3:14 pm

    i heard there was one in PB also. Maybe it’s not there anymore.
    Your images and story are mouthwatering though.
    Thanks
    Mark

  5. 5

    Kirbie — October 8, 2009 @ 5:05 pm

    I was really happy with all the nigiri options. We didn’t even try most of them, so next time I go I definitely want to try more. I think the difference between botan ebi and amaebi is that amaebi are smaller. They had amaebi platter as well, with two smaller sweet shrimp. The one in the pictures was one big one with the fried head. I would love it if they had a Kula in SD!

  6. 6

    Kirbie — October 8, 2009 @ 5:06 pm

    The one I heard of in PB is Kabuki. Never been though. Not sure if there are others. I think there used to be one in downtown La Jolla but it closed.

  7. 7

    Irvine trip Part 1 (Kula revolving sushi bar and The Balcony) | Kirbie Cravings — October 20, 2010 @ 3:31 pm

    [...] lunch and dinner. It always seems to be pretty busy. Every plate is $2. We previously visited Kula here. I noticed on this trip that were quite a few new items.  This is the list of sushi plates [...]

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