Wednesday, August 03, 2005

mangetsu (formerly koi sushi) brentwood

mangetsu, formerly koi sushi is tucked away into a newish strip mall on sand creek road in brentwood. the east bay brentwood of gigantic, anonymous housing developments that erupt from the parched earth like zits on a burger-eating, milkshake-gulping, playstation-fiddling teenager.

so koi, i mean mangetsu (which means full moon), is a reasonably pleasant space, much what you might expect from a strip mall. functional, clean, basic. the service is very friendly and well-meaning if not particularly well-polished, but then again they only recently opened and it isn't really that sort of a place anyway.

we wandered in around 1:30 on a monday afternoon. there were a few tables of diners and one fellow at the sushi bar. my moms ordered the sushi don ($7.50), which is basically sushi rice with slabs of sashimi on top.

although the menu specified that only one type of fish could be ordered (both in japanese and english), our server assured us that we could choose more than one. moms chose the hamachi and maguro. with both meals a very nice little green salad of iceberg lettuce and very thinly grated daikon and carrot bathed in a creamy miso dressing was served, followed by a mild bowl of miso soup. the verdict on the fish? "pretty good", which is what she always says, except for when she says "not so good". who knows? it looked good. the portion was about right, not too big, not too small.

because it was probably about 100 degrees that day i didn't order my usual udon or soba, but instead chose the yasai (vegetable) sushi lunch ($8.65), and was plenty glad i did. usually the veggie sushi combos are just so-so with the usual seaweed wrapped suspects blandly lurking on a plate. but just look at this.

what a feast for the eyes! seatbelted onto their little pats of seasoned rice were: pickled carrot, sweet pickled radish, creamy avocado, cool refreshing cucumber slices and a highly seasoned sweet kanpyo.

and the maki was something i've never seen before: thinly sliced strings of daikon and carrot (unseasoned) with spicy radish sprouts and the seaweed on the inside. it was, to be truthful, a little bland with just a hint of spicyness from the sprouts, but i give the chef full points for creativity. it perked up quite a bit once i drizzled a little of the lemon into the center. i assumed that was what it was for...

dinners prices range from $9.25 for a saba shioyaki, to $16.25 for a 2 item combination, to $19.50 for the sushi or sashimi combination dinner. lunches run from $7.65 to $13.00.

the verdict? "better than miraku" moms says.

50 sand creek road
brentwood, ca 94513
925 513 2268
mon - fri 11:00 - 2:30
mon - thurs 5:00 - 9:30
fri-sat 5:00 - 10:00


Blogger Lada said...

We are Southern CA natives who found ourselves residing in Brentwood. We used to drive all the way to Kirala in Berkeley or Sushi Ran in Sausalito for decent sushi, but we lucked out when Mangetsu (formerly Koi) came to town. One thing visitors should know is that you are missing out if you don't sit at the bar and hang out with the owner Jack. He loves to talk about the traditions of Japanese fare and he takes great pride in his food. Happy eating!

10:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like their service and foods which way better than other restaurants in antioch and brentwood. No wonder they earned the Best japanese Restaurant in Brentwood this year. You should try their sake tasting day and sake bar. I am so impressed when Jack taught me all traditional Japanese culture and Jenny treated kids so nice

1:41 AM  
Anonymous David said...

This restaurant rocks! Not only is the sushi some of the best I have ever tasted, it is reasonably priced. The selection of sake is impeccable. Talk to Jack, he will recommend something not only to your liking but in your price range as well (hot or cold).

4:26 PM  

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