Monday, February 15, 2010

Short North: Haiku

Five. Seven. Five.

The composition of a haiku.

When you are seated in the dining area of Haiku, in the heart of the Short North, there are haikus posted by restaurant patrons everywhere. Some funny, some serious. Mine tend to be goofy and nonsensical, but clearly that is just me.

Haiku has been known as one of Columbus's finest sushi restaurants. A great outdoor dining area that is packed any given night in the spring and summer, and two dining areas inside with different vibes; tables with bench seats, one side with larger tables for bigger parties than the other.

Apart from Sushi, Haiku has many other palate pleasers, including noodle and rice dishes, chickens sauteed in a variety of sauces, and a slew of appetizers. However, the best kept secret of Haiku is its lunchbox.

It's kind of a tradition started by my friend Todd and I that whenever we go for lunch, we'll usually go to Happy Greek for salads, or if we are craving a plentiful meal, we will head to Haiku for the lunchbox. Todd is actually the first person to introduce me to the Haiku lunchbox.

For $14.95, the Haiku Lunchbox comes with enough food for two people: 3 pieces of an Alaskan roll, 3 pieces of of a California roll; a variety of tempura; seaweed salad; 2 pieces of sashimi; choice of chicken, beef, or fish; and three pieces of gyoza. In addition to all of this, you also get a bowl of miso soup and a salad with a light ginger-peanut dressing.

I personally think that the gyoza at Haiku is pretty gross. I always ask if I can trade out the gyoza for an extra side of seaweed salad. Sometimes the waitress is unwilling to budge; however, today, I was in luck.

Don't expect the chicken to be warm. It is slightly chilled, in a sweet teriyaki sauce. The chicken is grilled however, and has a nice char to it.

The tempura usually consist of: 1 onion, 1 sweet potato, 1 potato, 1 squash, and a broccoli. Really, a piece of broccoli? Who wants to shove a gigantic piece of broccoli that's battered in often times overly thick and greasy tempura batter into their gullet at lunch time?

Anyway...the tempura today were warm and crispy, but slightly overcoated. The seaweed salad was typical seaweed salad. Not heavy on the vinegar, which is nice. And I had a double order since i swapped out the gross gyoza...hopefully that added some nutritional value that the tempura depleted.

The sushi rolls were pretty typical. Nothing to report there. However, on the Sashimi, I must point out that the knife skills on the piece of tuna were really great. I wish I had my real camera, so I could have captured the detail.

As in typical fashion after a delightful Asian meal, fresh fruit was served (although in winter, Japanese Oriental Restaurant will serve dum-dum suckers instead). Here we had a nice half an orange, with once again beautiful knife skills on the fruit. The orange was sliced so that we could pick it up in individual diamond shaped sizes.

CONCLUSION: This is the best deal in town for any sushi lover at lunch time.

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