Thursday, June 21, 2012

RB Sushi (All You Can Eat)

We celebrated my sister’s birthday last weekend, which could only mean one thing: time for another round of all you can eat sushi!

I’m not a huge fan of AYCE sushi. The quality tends to be so-so, orders are forgotten, and I don’t like having to stuff myself with rice. But my siblings love it, and every birthday dinner is usually a request for AYCE sushi. It’s become a competition and they keep track of who has eaten the most pieces.

Luckily, there seems to be new AYCE places popping up all the time, so we don’t have to keep going to the same ones. This time around we decided to check out RB Sushi in Rancho Bernardo. Dinner is only $24.95 for the AYCE, which is a little bit cheaper than most places. They offer a pretty large menu including items like uni (limit one order per person). Best of all, there also was no time limit and though the menu sheet says three rounds, they told us they would not limit us to three rounds. They also did not require us to sit at the bar.


We tried out some of the appetizers (which are served as half orders for AYCE), but most of them were pretty bad. The shrimp tempura was hard, the agedashi tofu bleh. The only one I liked was the deep fried soft shell crab and the salmon kalma.

Crab handroll

Variety of Nigiri (yellowtail, tuna, salmon, uni, roe eggs, shrimp, halibut, scallop, surf clams)

The nigiri was okay fish quality. However the surf clams were not properly cleaned and full of sand. The thing I disliked the most though was the sushi rice which was too sweet. It reminded me of adding sugar to water.

Most of the specialty rolls on the regular menu were offered on the AYCE menu which is nice, except for the fact that rolls are so filling. Someone in our group made the mistake of ordering too many specialty rolls, which he couldn’t finish. This greatly affected how much we were able to consume because we had to help him finish.

Baked Lobster Roll

Da Bomb

Heart Attack

Volcano

I don’t remember what rolls these were.

They actually got almost our entire first order right, missing only our octopus and one order of uni. Other places we’ve tried usually mess up a much bigger portion of the order and forget almost half the items.

Like most AYCE places, RB does charge for any leftover food. They kept reminding us of this throughout the night. And they asked several times if we would be finishing the rice. They basically held the missing food from our first round hostage until we had cleared the table and polished off the rice. We found this a little annoying. Since they were going to charge us if we didn’t finish, I don’t know why they were so concerned about whether we finished or not. And I didn’t like that they kept putting off giving us the stuff missing from our first order until we finished every bite on our table.

Overall, we had mixed feelings about this place. There is a large variety, more relaxed rules, and cheaper prices compared to other AYCE sushi places we’ve been to. On the other hand, some of the food quality was worse such as the appetizers and the unclean clams and the constant asking us about finishing the rice and refusing to give us the rest of our order was annoying.

We usually eat a lot more sushi, but due to one of my brothers not being there, and one person ordering way too many specialty rolls, this was our worst showing ever at an AYCE place. I haven’t quite yet decided if we will return.

RB Sushi
16405 Bernardo Center Dr
San Diego CA 92128
http://rbsushi.com/
RB Sushi on Urbanspoon
 

 

13 Responses to “RB Sushi (All You Can Eat)”

  1. 1

    Kay — June 21, 2012 @ 5:44 am

    Wow that’s a lot of sushi! I also find them holding the sushi hostage to be strange- if they stopped doing that I bet they’d actually get more money in the end like you said, haha.

    • Kirbie replied: — June 21st, 2012 @ 8:29 am

      I know seriously! I was wondering if the “we’re going to charge extra” is a threat they don’t really carry out so they were stressing about having to carry it out. We had large clumps of rice in our plates, but basically we were waiting till the end to eat them and it was definitely annoying for them to come over and ask again and again if we were going to eat it.

  2. 2

    Alan — June 21, 2012 @ 9:22 am

    I agree with all of your comments. But I too go to some AYCE sushi places because they are more affordable. If I go to a traditional sushiya that has all the “good stuff” (toro, japan hamachi, mirugai, aji, etc. etc.) I can easily eat over $150 worth myself. So AYCE places are more affordable. But I find the trick is to eat only the nigiri that is worth eating. Your pics show some pretty good stuff. I wish I was there to help you folks eat.

    • Kirbie replied: — June 21st, 2012 @ 9:57 am

      I definitely understand the appeal of AYCE. I ended up doing it because the regular menu consisted of mainly rolls as they were all priced around $12 each, so I figured it I ordered two rolls I’m paying the same price as AYCE, might as well do the AYCE. And then i get to try many rolls, appetizers, and nigiri. I just hate stuffing myself with bad sushi rice. Normally I don’t even eat all the rice for my nigiri so I hate that I have to eat it all for the AYCE.

  3. 3

    Faye — June 21, 2012 @ 12:49 pm

    I laughed when i saw the ONE piece of shrimp tempura! How *generous*. I’m not a carb lover so the AYCE kills me. Are the non-rice items pretty decent – I’m looking at the kitchen items now and they seem so-so. Not sure if i can get $25 worth of food thou.

    Try to find an AYCE that has sashimi (besides Savory Buffet on weekends) !

    Nice post!

    • Kirbie replied: — June 21st, 2012 @ 2:53 pm

      Yeah, it was only one shrimp tempura. Lol. The kitchen orders they did half orders of everything for each “order” you put in. The kitchen stuff actually was pretty bad. Probably the worst of all the all you can eat places I’ve gone to. I would stick with the sushi rolls or nigiri, except I didn’t like the nigiri rice.

  4. 4

    Ann P. — June 21, 2012 @ 3:10 pm

    Sounds like you did not have that great of a meal! I’ll remember this when my sushi-loving friend comes down to visit!

  5. 5

    Carol — June 22, 2012 @ 4:20 pm

    I see ads for this place all the time. Not sure I’d try it any time soon. It’s hard to go to some place like this when we have Poway Sushi Lounge. And I can never eat my worth at AYCE places.

    • Kirbie replied: — June 23rd, 2012 @ 11:31 pm

      I usually don’t do the AYCE, but I did this time because the menu didn’t have anything I particularly wanted. My stomach was not happy with me after.

  6. 6

    Judy — June 25, 2012 @ 1:34 am

    I try not to go to All-You-Can-Eat places that feature only one regional cuisine as it gets boring pretty quickly. Thanks again for your honest review. I really appreciate that you always tell it as it is.

    • Kirbie replied: — June 25th, 2012 @ 8:39 am

      I’m glad you appreciate my honesty. =)

  7. 7

    leanne — June 25, 2012 @ 9:35 am

    I’m becoming less and less a fan of AYCE sushi. If we hit Poway Sushi Lounge on half-price Monday, we can go through 2-3 rolls, some nigiri, and one other item and still be around $50 for the two of us. We’re not totally stuffed and the sushi is excellent. I’d rather do that than try and feel like I need to get my money’s worth of so-so sushi.

    I think it’s lame they badgered you into eating the rice.

    • Kirbie replied: — June 25th, 2012 @ 12:49 pm

      I usually don’t do the AYCE and just take pics of my family doing it. I did it this time and probably for the last time. My stomach was way too full of just so-so food and I’d rather just enjoy myself rather than stuff myself like that.

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