Back to Features

South Sound sushi playground

A sushi-size sample of South Sound sushi joints

There is more to good sushi than fresh fish. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Email Article Print Article Share on Facebook Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon

We all have food cravings, right?

But what if you had a food craving so intense that the intensity turned to obsession? That obsession turned to mission. And that mission was your life (well, for a short time anyway).

Last summer, my husband and I literally gorged ourselves with these teeny little morsels of awesome meal after meal.

Sushi had taken over our lives.

And it started out simply enough. We hadn't had sushi in a very long time and it sounded good. We ventured out to a well-reviewed sushi joint in a creepy house turned into a restaurant in Seattle's U-District.

We pored over the extensive menu for 30 minutes, beer in hand, planning and plotting our culinary attack. And attack we did. The food was so ridiculously good.

In fact, it was so good, it unleashed the food beasts.

We ate sushi nonstop for about a week. Literally.

Eating, eating, eating. California roll, dragon roll, spicy tuna rolls, vegetable rolls, classic rolls, wasabi, soy sauce, ginger. (More please).

And when we weren't gorging ourselves, we were diving into sushi documentaries, the interwebs, podcasts, studying photos, you name it, all in the name of sushi.

Better? The Puget Sound is a virtual sushi playground. Seek and ye shall find this goodness and wring your hands and stare wild-eyed at the Internet, hunting for your next fix (we did, anyway).

Finding it isn't so hard. While the city to the north has many fine options to explore, the South Sound represents. The sample below is indeed sushi-sized. Besides, if I just get you started and give you even a little taste of my beautiful sushi madness, my work here is done.

New (or new-ish) to sushi? No worries - here are three sushi basics, before we explore.

1. Lots of people think sushi is raw fish. Nope. Sushi is actually rice prepared with a mix of rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Fish is actually one of the many toppings for sushi. Raw fish served alone is referred to as sashimi.

2. If you stink at using chopsticks, can you pick it up with your fingers? Absolutely! Sushi can be eaten as a finger food (and was originally).

3. If you use soy sauce on your sushi, etiquette dictates that you don't drown it with the stuff (and never put it on the rice). Use sparingly, pop in your mouth and enjoy.

Here are some of my favorites in the South Sound. ...


TWOKOI Japanese Restaurant (downtown): Award-winning Japanese and fusion cuisine right in the heart of the most exciting parts of downtown Tacoma. Lots of sushi and rolls to try (plus great happy hour prices). Sushi classes available for those who want to give it a whirl at home. 1552 Commerce St., Suite 100, Tacoma.


Kyoto Japanese Restaurant: Traditional and delicious Japanese food at really great prices to sample and learn about. Some Korean dishes available, too. Don't let the strip mall location be a distraction. 8722 South Tacoma Way, Lakewood.

Gig Harbor

Domo Sushi: More than 70 sushi rolls, traditional nigori and sashimi selections with artful and fun presentations. There's even a kiddo menu with their favorites, so parents can feast and enjoy without hassle. 4901 Point Fosdick Drive NW, Suite B 100, Gig Harbor.

Puyallup/Bonney Lake/Tacoma

Trapper's Sushi: Customers really love the sushi here, and it has a loyal following. It helps that there is an all-you-can-eat dinner and lunches with terrific long rolls and some choice veggie options. Cute kiddie menu, too. 206 39th Ave. SW, Puyallup; 20649 State Route 410 E., Bonney Lake; 3118 Sixth Ave., Tacoma.


Koibito Sushi: Locals really show the love for this little place. Expansive menu of options for the seafood lover or veggie lover at nice prices. 1701 Harrison Ave., Olympia.


Sapporo & Sushi Restaurant: A small and cozy place that packs a nice big sushi punch with locals. Bonus: try the bento box, too. 4803 Pacific Highway East, Suite 2, Fife.

Read next close


Strip mall dining in Pierce County

comments powered by Disqus