Thursday, September 30, 2010

Hanaoka- Sweetwater National City

1528 Sweetwater Road Suite C

Home Page for Hanaoka

For the record, I didnt want to dislike this place.  It was perhaps ill fated to begin with since the sushi place we originally sought out to eat at was unexpectedly closed.  So we went here b/c my friend knows the place pretty well.  I ate here once (dont think I reviewed it) and felt it was meh.  But I wanted to give it the good old second chance...besides we were hungry!  Our waitress was very sweet and had the most adorable japanese accent.  Sometimes accents are not so pleasant you know?  They have a large menu.  Ive seen larger sushi menus but they also have noodles (cold and hot), rice dishes, cooked fish dishes, salads and sushi boats.  Not the prettiest of ambiance.  I felt the price of their food was too high given the quality.  Eek is that too harsh?  First up... side salad.  One came with the sashimi plate you will see later, the other had to be ordered separate.  I didnt really care for their dressing...some pseudo1000 island concoction.  Too heavy and thick for their standard slightly limp iceberg lettuce array.  For 3.50 I definitely dont feel I got my $ worth.  Still it was something to nosh on and help get you full i suppose.  My friend also got a miso soup with his sashimi plate...he said it was standard.  

This is the mixed handroll...dont know the price.  It is freaking large and in charge for sure.  You cant see it but the seaweed doesnt go all the way around due to its largeness.  I see lots of rice though so that might contribute.  According to my friend, this is good.  Has tuna, crab mix, avo, and shrimp.  I just could not get over the massivity of this thing.  

This was one of my picks.  The Hawaiian roll.  Probably around 10-14 bucks.  Overpriced for sure since it was just shrimp, crab and spicy tuna.  However I do want to point out that it tasted pleasant and I was surprised by the secret ingredient of chili oil laid down on the plate before putting the roll on the plate, allowing it to seep into the rice.  Nice touch.    The spicy tuna part?  Not so spicy but not bland.  

This was friend's sashimi plate.  $17 for 12 pieces of sashimi.  The only fish I sampled was the albacore (yum, could have been sliced a bit more generously imo).  It also came with salmon, tuna and one other fish I cant quite recall.  The middle seaweed salad got me excited until i realized it was just decoration and completely unseasoned.  also comes with a bowl of rice, along with the previously mentioned soup and salad.

The worst dish of the night.  Baked crab roll.  The only good thing about this roll is that the lady mentioned that it comes in half orders so we opted for the half.  That spicy aioli?  Not spicy.  Would be surprised if it was aioli since it tastes similar to the lame salad dressing.  The roll was not piping hot, the rice was not a good texture and the crab was too mayonaisey inside.  I only ate one.  It wasnt a cheap roll either come to think of it.  Lame sauce.  

Overall, I probably wouldnt come back for awhile unless I was outvoted by others.  We went on a Wed night, so it wasnt too crowded or anything.  Parking is more than plentiful as the business next door has gone belly up and its a strip mall actually.  Our bill came out to 51 bucks and with tip, basically 60 something dollars spent here.  I can say without a doubt that I can find better sushi at 51 bucks a pop in at least 2 different places.  Sorry hanaoka and their fans....I will pass


  1. hi dd - i love the waitresses there - there's an older lady who says, "Hai, Spritu" (when serving your Sprite drink". Been going here since my college days...back in the dinosaur days, haha. but as I've gotten older, found that their food doesn't really do it for me anymore. it's okay, but not spectacular. plus, their sushi rolls have too much rice and are cut too thin, making it hard to bite.

  2. I hardly go out to eat so I get really annoyed when my food is not good! There is nothing more frustrating that overpaying for average food, although I have to admit that this sushi looks really delicious! At least they have the presentation part down.

    I know very little about sushi but I do like the Whole Foods variety...I think my sushi-snob brother would die from embarassment if I admitted that to him. :)

    Do you ever get up to Los Angeles DD?