Room to improve at Aichi Sushi
New sushi restaurant in center makes average first impression
Posted: September 18, 2013
A new sushi joint in town is always cause for excitement for those who love Japanese food. It's not easy to find good, decently priced sushi in Prague, so each new place holds the potential of being the place that finally hits the sushi sweet spot.
Spanking new Aichi Sushi, which just opened on Jama street, may not be "it" but it nonetheless adds another good sushi option to the center of Prague.
V Jámě 8
226 203 699
Tuna tartar with scallions and Japanese spices 175 Kč
Udon noodles stir fried with vegetables, shitake mushrooms, chicken, Japanese soy sauce and mirin 190 Kč
Tuna Maki roll, 6 pieces 140 Kč
Rainbow Tempura roll, 8 pieces, with salmon, tuna, butterfish, avocado, cucumber and spicy mayonnaise, fried in batter temper 350 Kč
Green Tea Ice-cream 85 Kč
Aichi has all the surface elements of a potentially great sushi place. A clean, brand new interior with stylish blond wood furniture and minimalist design, an extensive menu with several freshly made options, and professional staff. The presentation is impeccable, from the neatly rolled warm towels provided to wipe your hands before the meal to the delicately presented dishes decorated with carved vegetables. Another plus is that Aichi delivers, but only within Prague 1.
Though relatively empty during this visit, with time the restaurant has potential to eventually attract a mixed crowd of locals and tourists from nearby hotels due to its location. But let's talk about the food, because that is, after all, the most important thing. The options for starters are good, with a well-portioned flavorful miso soup (80 Kč) or a simple yet tasty salmon avocado salad (150 Kč) as just two of the many options. The salad came served with an attractive and delicious flower-shaped piece of carrot filled with fresh salmon roe, showing nice attention to detail.
For the main course you can choose, of course, sushi. And in this domain there is a generous selection, from nigiri, maki and uramaki to sashimi. There are also other options for those who prefer their food cooked, including a variety of teriyaki dishes.
On weekdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. there is a lunch menu ranging from about 135 Kč to 395 Kč depending on your hunger level. The lower price range for example includes a non-sushi Japanese dishes like chicken teriyaki with rice or eight simple maki rolls with a cup of green tea. In the higher price range are menus including soup and several kinds of sushi. Daily menus can be found on the website.
For the people who love the international "sushi" favorites there are several recognizable modern classics on the à la carte menu, including California and Philadelphia rolls. Unusually, the California roll (eight pieces, 220 Kč) arrived containing salmon, rather than the typical crab. It was good, but not amazing. Usually what makes a really tasty California roll is the inclusion of salmon roe or at least sesame seeds around the outside, which in this case were absent.
Similarly, the salmon maki (6 pieces, 140 Kč) and the calamari tempura inside-out roll (145 Kč) were fresh and perfectly respectable, but not the type of sushi that makes your eyes roll with pleasure. Keeping the tempura crispy inside the roll is a challenge, and in this case it fell just short of success. It seems the factors behind achieving the perfect sushi roll are more elusive than you would think, considering the simplicity of the ingredients.
Like the sushi, the prices are about average for Prague, if not slightly higher.
It may not be the best sushi in the world, or in Prague for that matter, but Aichi is still worth trying if you're ever in the center of Prague and hankering for some quality raw fish and rice in a clean setting. The kind of professionalism displayed this early in the restaurant's life suggests that there is also some healthy room for improvement and perfection of the offerings.
Jennifer Day can be reached at