Sushi Ko in Merrick

Sushi Ko in Merrick

Sushi Ko is breathing new life into a space that was previously occupied by Akari sushi for many years. To say that the new ownership is an improvement would be an understatement. The previous incarnation was dated, the service was horrible – at best, and the food was nothing we’d want to return to. This has changed everything.

Photo Courtesy of Mark Brandon Photography

We’ve showed our faces about a half dozen times since they have opened. We’ve even visited prior to their hard opening, when they didn’t even have take out menus available. They were getting the kinks out before they let the world know about them; but that wasn’t necessary. The kitchen and the sushi chef were humming along like they were pros. This is the owner’s first restaurant as an owner, and to be as consistent as they’ve been on a few of our return trips is a great sign that this restaurant was meant to be.

Spicy Tuna Crunch Ball Wrapped in Avocado
Photo Courtesy of Mark Brandon Photography

The decor has been completely revamped since its days as Akari. The old, 1980’s era interior has been replced with a modern, dimly lit and up to date interior. There is dining upstairs and downstairs; with upstairs having tables that you can sit in similar to a Japanese tatami table. There is also regular seating upstairs as well.

Inside of Spicy Tuna Crunch Ball
Photo Courtesy of Mark Brandon Photography

One of our favorite dishes from around the island is a spicy tuna ball wrapped with avocado. We’ve dined on this endlessly at Naru Sushi in Great Neck on the north shore, but have yet to find something comparable to it anywhere else. As we were sitting at the sushi counter talking to the chef, we recounted this fact and he noted that they did indeed have something similar to this on their menu. Excited, but trying to keep our poker faces on, we ordered their interpretation. What arrived was similar in texture and taste, but unfortunately about 1/3 of the size of what we were used to. The price was steep for the little appetizer as well, at around $8. Besides the high price of the appetizer it tasted wonderful and wasn’t far off the mark of our perfect treat from Naru.

Sushi Roll – can you find it in the sauce?
Photo Courtesy of Mark Brandon Photography

On the menu are fun items such as tuna pizza (pancake topped with guacamole, tuna, yellowtail, chef special sauce, scallion and smelt roe), filet mignon tataki (choice of two great flavors) and special rolls such as the Rising Sun Roll (California roll inside topped with fresh salmon, baked with spicy mayonnaise), New Orleans Roll (Crawfish, avocado, crunchy inside, crab salad and spicy tuna on top with wasabi tobiko and eel sauce) and the Flaming Volcano Roll (Eel, shrimp. tamago, crab stick, scallion wrapped with white fish and fried, topped with crunchy spicy tuna, spicy eel sauce and wasabi mayo). Our only criticism about the sushi is the liberal use of “special sauces” on the special rolls. We feel that it’s detracting from the taste of the fish and should be used more conservatively.

Tempura and Spicy Tuna
Photo Courtesy of Mark Brandon Photography

We’re genuinely excited about the arrival of Sushi Ko. They’ve taken to their little spot on Merrick Rd. and seem to be rocking and rolling each night that they’re open. The sushi is always fresh, the flavors lively and the specials that are on the menu (and even those that are off – maybe they’ll make you something very special) are always appealing. We’ll continue to visit throughout our culinary travels and hope that you will, too.

Sushi Ko
2063 Merrick Road
Merrick, NY 11566
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