Off the Eaten Path

Exploring St. Louis, one meal at a time…

Tempura overload!

So I’m going to start this post off by saying that I’m obsessed with sushi. OBSESSED! I love it. However, at the same time, I’m a huge sushi snob. All-you-can-eat sushi spots? No thanks. Grocery store sushi? No ma’am. Sushi at a BUFFET? (Yes, it happens!) Hecky no!

But I’ll definitely snack on sushi from a reputable restaurant, as evidenced here and here. Mmm. I love it!

So when my mom and sister wanted to hit up Asia @ Lumiere Place in STL for some eats, I was down! Sushi heaven!

This trip was sort of interesting, because my mom and sister already had an idea of what they wanted me to try. I’ll try just about ANYTHING, so I’m a guinea pig of sorts, I suppose! Oh well…I love it. 🙂

We started out with grilled shrimp. The menu described it as ‘honey glazed shrimp skewered and glazed to perfection’. It was served with a sweet and tangy sauce.

Yes, it was just a delicious as it looked! So yummy and flavorful. Too bad I had to share and couldn’t eat it all myself. 🙂

Next, we (or should I say ‘I’?) had the tempura vegetables and the tempura soft shell crab. Tempura overload, anyone?

tempura veggies

tempura softshell crab

The veggies came with a thin soy sauce, and the crab came with a thicker, sweeter teriyaki sauce.  I was in love with the teriyaki sauce, but honestly, I don’t think tempura covered foods are my thing. I would rather just eat grilled or steamed vegetables. Tempura batter just adds unnecessary crunch (and calories!) that aren’t needed, in my opinion. What’s this? Stephanie likes the HEALTHIER option? Check this girl’s temperature!

The tempura soft shell crab suffered from the same tempura overload. It was just unnecessary. The crab wasn’t too tasty, either. I’m usually a big crab fan, but this tasted super fishy. Weird.

Time for the main courses! My sister was dying to try the Kumo sushi roll. It included soft shell crab, tempura shrimp, cream cheese, avocado, fried asparagus, and was topped with spicy mayo, eel sauce, and tobiko (flying fish roe). Sounds intense! And it looked intense:

Kumo Roll

Look at all of that yummy roe! I love the stuff.  The presentation was kind of cool, but we had to stare at it for a bit and decide exactly how we were going to conquer the thing. Finally my sister knocked the tower over, and we went to town.

So how did it taste? It was just ooookay. The entire thing was coated in tempura, so it was hard to distinguish the different components of the sushi, which was a little frustrating. It was also really hard to eat. The individual pieces of the roll were HUGE, and it was hard to fit the entire piece in my mouth (TWSS!). I tried biting it in half (which I NEVER do with sushi), and it ended up making a mess (which is why I never try to do that!). It was bad. I could only eat two pieces before I had had enough.

The others in the party had better luck with their food. My mom had plain fried rice, which was pretty good.

There was also beef and broccoli:

And general Tso’s shrimp:

I didn’t try either dish, but they looked tasty!

I did have a few complaints about Asia. First of all, they had a lot of popular Chinese and Japanese appetizers and such, but NO MISO SOUP. Oooh. That’s a huge strike. You have an entire sushi menu, and no miso soup? Bad.

Secondly, they don’t have a dessert menu. Nothing would have made me happier at the end of the meal than some mochi ice cream, and they didn’t have any! Double strike.

Enough complaining. Time for some scores!

Food: 2 stars (out of five)

Ambiance: 3 stars

Service: 3 stars

Value: 3 stars

This time around the food wasn’t so great, but I would definitely give it another shot in the future! And no tempura this time. 🙂

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June 20, 2010 - Posted by | food | , , , , , , , , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. From one sushi snob to another, I must encourage you to give Blue Ocean Sushi (the Loop) a try if you haven’t already. While they do market their “All You Can Eat” menus, they have some fantastic rolls and allow for big discounts when you buy a certain number of rolls at a time. (And for someone who could eat rolls by the dozen at a time, it’s perfect for me.)

    Plus, they’ve got miso on the menu. 😛

    Comment by Mez | June 20, 2010 | Reply

  2. wow. i must say, that kumo roll looks AMAZING!!! i’m not a huge fan of tempura either, though (same reasons) But I sure do love me some tobiko and spicy mayo…mmm. i think you may have planted a seed — i’m going to have to get sushi at some point this week!

    Comment by banba1 | June 20, 2010 | Reply


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