Faster than a sushi chef can transform a slab of tuna, sushi restaurants are popping up all over Long Island. Some are new to the neighborhood, others are spinoffs of existing places, and a few more take the place of sushi predecessors.
In this rash of openings (and closings), you might find it hard to keep up. So here are a dozen places to know about, all of which have opened within the past 18 months.
Sunakkuba in Massapequa Park is a traditional Japanese restaurant features such sushi bar items as tuna tataki, sashimi and rolls simple and ornate. (Including the Supernova roll, pictured, with crab and avocado wrapped in seared salmon and topped with spicy mayo, eel sauce, tobiko and scallions.) Rounding out the menu are classic kitchen dishes, such as shrimp tempura, chicken teriyaki and nabe yaki udon.
212 Sushi Lounge
Affiliated with Aji 53 in Bay Shore and Smithtown, 212 Sushi Lounge in Rockville Centre serves such kitchen dishes as crispy rock shrimp tempura and tamarind-chili-glazed spareribs. Hibachi comes from the kitchen. Raw fish options include a sushi-sashimi platter, a spider roll and a mango madness roll. (Pictured: spicy rice tuna.)
Watawa Sushi & Lounge
Sleek-looking Watawa, in the former Bethpage digs of Ozumo, offers an all-you-can-eat option from a special menu of sushi and kitchen items. Or go for the regular menu, with such choices as black pepper tuna tataki, chirashi and beef sukiyaki.
Otaki in Garden City Park offers the familiar array of sushi and sashimi, teriyakis and tempuras, traditional and more exotic sushi rolls. But the kitchen also prepares colorful fusion fare such as an eggplant "cha-cha" roll, Cajun pepper tuna salad and tuna-mango salad.
Wasabi Japanese Steakhouse
Half sushi restaurant, half hibachi house, Wasabi Japanese Steakhouse accommodates raw fish lovers with a separate, 50-seat dining space. Order such sushi specialties as yellowtail carpaccio, a mango delight roll (pictured) and an imperial sashimi plate.
Niji Asian Sushi
In the former digs of Jani in Mineola comes Niji, a multipurpose spot serving sushi, Asian-fusion dishes and some traditional Chinese classics -- yellowtail jalapeño meets General Tso's chicken meets pad Thai. Hibachi is made in the kitchen, not the dining room.
Along with a sushi menu featuring rainbow rolls, chirashi and sea scallop carpaccio, Mizu in Bethpage has hibachi tables with pyrotechnic displays. Also, Asian-fusion dishes and Japanese kitchen fare. (Pictured: a sushi roll platter with a crazy tuna roll, crazy sake roll and ocean roll.)
A friendly little, full-serve Japanese restaurant, Little Tokyo in Bethpage offers the Japanese requisites of sushi, sashimi, tempura and teriyaki, plus hibachi dishes, prepared in the kitchen. A few Thai items, as well. (Pictured: a spicy tuna roll.)
Kumo Sushi Hibachi & Lounge
This offshoot of Kumo Sushi in Plainview differs from the original by the presence of six hibachi tables. But you also can dine in a separate room at Kumo in Bay Shore -- and find most everything that is available in Plainview, such as the eggplant "sandwich," black pepper tuna roll and chirashi. (Pictured: assorted sushi platter.)
Kobe Japanese Steakhouse
In the renovated space in Jericho that housed Aozora, and before that, Genji, comes Kobe Japanese Steakhouse, a dual-purpose restaurant where sushi eaters have their own area. On the roster: sashimi salad, a salmon lover roll and a chirashi dinner. (Pictured: sashimi and a lobster roll.)
Kisoro Asian Sushi
At Kisoro Asian Sushi in Carle Place, you'll find a full roster of sushi bar items -- salmon carpaccio, crazy rainbow roll, chirashi -- as well as Japanese, Thai and Chinese kitchen dishes. Hibachi items are prepared in the kitchen. (Pictured: a sashimi platter with salmon, tuna and yellowtail.)
Kaji Sushi & Lounge
In addition to items such as tuna pizza, an "out of control" roll and a sushi-sashimi combo, Kaji Sushi in Garden City offers several hibachi-style entrees made in the kitchen rather than at big communal tables. Also on the menu: duck spring maki, black pepper tuna tataki, spicy tuna gyoza, rack of lamb and a sushi deluxe platter (pictured).