Union Station has witnessed a remarkable transformation within the past couple of years. The arching spaces have been revamped, and more cafés and eateries have been added such as Pret A Manger, Crumbs, and Roti. As someone who works within walking distance of this transportation hub, I am excited by these additions, which have made Union Station a lunchtime destination. Before, there was no way I was leaving my office for lunch in Union Station. I'm happy to report that a truly delicious eatery has recently opened this July in Union Station. YO! Sushi serves up - you guessed it - sushi and quick Japanese food, and it's located in the corridor next to the Metro exit across from Chipotle.
What makes YO! Sushi so delightful is the sushi-go-round where a conveyor belt delivers small plates of food around the restaurant. You pick what you want to eat, stack up the plates, and pay for how many and what color plates you chose. It's like tapas but you get to see the food before you choose, and no one will give you weird looks for getting three servings of takoyaki, which are crispy octopus balls (or would they?). This is a great lunch place to come with coworkers and friends because YO! Sushi is casual and fun. Eating becomes an adventure! (Who is willing to try miso chocolate mousse first?)
Washington, DC is YO! Sushi's first outpost in the United States. It's a UK chain that has restaurants all over the world, and they are just expanding to the U.S. I personally am flattered that they chose our city over another obvious choice, New York, and I think it's because we've got an ideal demographic for international foods. Plus, DC is becoming one of the food cities in America. It must be because we have such refined palettes and a penchant for fun and adventurous food. When you go, you must to sit at the bar, which seats 38 people, and look at the back wall. The amazing artwork is a colorful and whimsical blend of our city and Tokyo. It's refreshing to see an international chain make a connection to the place we call home.
I could go on and on about the wonderful things of YO! Sushi. Service is super fast, but if you in a huge rush, you can always grab something fresh from their to-go fridge. If you love miso soup (I am a miso fiend), then you can get unlimited - yes, unlimited - miso soup for...$2.50! Each seat has its own water dispenser and button to call for a server. They are highly recommended by fish2fork.com for their sustainable fish practices. Biggest plus: YO! Sushi is also extremely affordable; plates range from $2.50 to $6.
I recommend the spicy yellowtail and scallion roll, which is sprinkled with a dusting of chives. It's a beautiful roll. The octopus balls are decent, too, but they are served hot so beware. If you are in a curious mood, try the Japanese lemonade or ramune. It's fizzy, sweet water that comes in a little glass bottle. Refreshing to say the least. If you are sitting inside, make sure you say hello to Chef Noriyuki Kudo who will most likely be busy preparing rolls and katsu in the central, open kitchen. Chef Nori came to America when he was 18 from Japan and has worked in Japanese cuisine since. He was Sous Chef at Sushi Roku in Santa Monica and has worked in L.A., Scottsdale, and Las Vegas. You are in good hands even if only for a quick lunch.
It was such a great experience with friendly staff, fast and fresh food, and engaging interior design that I am returning to YO! Sushi for lunch today. Maybe I'll see you there!
Photos by Len DePas.
Short URL: http://bit.ly/N4SomK