February 20, 1998 in Seven

Super Sushi, At Shogun ‘Palace’

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Shogun is calling its new addition a “sushi palace.”

And the space is, indeed, palatial. To reach it, you stroll over a bridge, past the waterfall in the entry, through the bar, across the dance floor, past the karaoke machine and up a couple of stairs to the spacious new sushi bar. There, you’ll find more than a dozen seats.

Fluffy white clouds painted on a cobalt blue ceiling and flashing lights give the place an other-worldly feel. And when the sushi chef slipped on Nirvana’s “Unplugged” CD, that was trippy, man.

Maybe it seemed like a scene from a David Lynch movie because there were only two of us in this huge room. Filled up, I imagine it would be a fun party.

Beyond the curious ambiance, though, the sushi was superb.

Each place setting has a menu, which walks you through the various offerings. Plastic placemats show pictures of the raw and cooked items, in English and Japanese. Diners fill out paper order sheets and hand them to the sushi chef.

He then slices and dices and hands over a wooden tray of edible art.

During my recent visit, standouts included the chef’s special roll with tuna, salmon and avocado draped on top of the sticky-sweet rice, the delicate yellowtail (hamachi) and the eel with a slightly sweet sauce drizzled on top. All the fish was fresh and flavorful.

More exotic selections included octopus, squid, clams and flying fish roe. Many of the choices sit behind glass, so you can eyeball them before you choose. It’s always best to ask what’s freshest.

The Shogun is located at 821 E. Third. For reservations, call 534-7777.

They’re big on beef

Spokane’s newest steakhouse is Spencer’s at The Doubletree Inn downtown.

Obviously, the menu is loaded with steaks in all shapes and sizes - from an eight-ounce filet to a 16-ounce New York. A prime rib chop weighs in at 22 ounces.

The steaks coming out of the kitchen are strictly prime beef, which is the upper crust of meat. It’s marbled with fat for taste and tenderness.

Along with the turf, the surf shows up in the form of grilled salmon and a daily special. There’s also chicken, lamb chops and a veal porterhouse for $25.95.

The menu is pricey - from $16.95 up to $29.95 - and that doesn’t include side dishes. A baked potato will cost you an additional $5.95.

It will be interesting to see if Spokane will swallow prices like these. I’ll be checking out the place soon and will report back.

For reservations, call 774-2372.

Roosters welcome

The eggs at Whitney’s Hen House Cafe are worth crowing about. Well, actually we heard the hash browns are pretty good, too.

This little breakfast and lunch spot has all the standard breakfast combos covered - bacon and eggs, corned beef hash and eggs, ham and eggs, chicken fried steak and eggs.

There’s also omelettes, biscuits and gravy and eggs benedict.

Lunch fare includes all sorts of sandwiches, from burgers to German sausage. In a throwback to the ‘60s, there’s a “diet plate” that has a hamburger patty, cottage cheese and sliced tomatoes.

Take note: There’s a non-smoking section, but the place is pretty small, so expect drifting fumes.

The Hen House is open from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. It’s located at 1004 Bridgeport, just off Nevada.

New moon at Luna

Luna’s menu was recently revamped and I’m just crazy about one of the new starters - a folded-over pizza crust stuffed with greens and gorgonzola. It’s called a piadine.

Among the other additions are an Asian salad, a pizza with smoked salmon and a fois gras appetizer. (I just read a story about a devastating shortage of this goose liver delicacy on the East Coast, so I guess we can consider ourselves lucky.)

Fresh takes on the entree side of the menu include a crusted pork tenderloin with a sweet potato-apple crisp, ziti with radicchio, spinach, fava beans and cambazola cheese and trout with lemon-shallot sauce.

To check out the new stuff, call 448-2383 for reservations.

Oregon wine dinner

Various varietals from one of Oregon’s leading producers will be showcased during a five-course dinner at 6:30 Sunday at Jimmy D’s in Coeur d’Alene.

The meal will be accompanied by six wines from Rex Hill, which is located in the Willamette Valley and has been around since 1983. It’s best known for pinot noir (this is Oregon, after all), but also for fine pinot gris and chardonnay.

Dinner is $50, which includes tax and tip. Reservations are essential, so if you want to go, call 208-664-9774.

Seeing stars

Starting next week, restaurants reviewed in this section will be given star ratings, similar to the system used for evaluating movies.

Four stars will designate flawless food, service and atmosphere. Three stars will mean great, two stars will stand for good and one star will signify fair. That’s as low as we’ll go. Restaurants that are dreadful simply won’t be reviewed.

In the coming months, previously reviewed restaurants will be re-evaluated and awarded stars.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Map showing location of Shogun restaurant

MEMO: Leslie Kelly can be contacted via E-mail at lesliek@spokesman.com or regular mail to Spokesman-Review, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210.

The following fields overflowed: SUPCAT = COLUMN, RESTAURANT REVIEW - Behind the Menu

Leslie Kelly can be contacted via E-mail at lesliek@spokesman.com or regular mail to Spokesman-Review, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210.

The following fields overflowed: SUPCAT = COLUMN, RESTAURANT REVIEW - Behind the Menu


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email