February 01, 2009

Plenty of Spice, Not Enough Warmth: Bistro Wasabi Review


Price: 3 out of 4

ToledoMenu Staff

Update: Readers have informed us that Bistro Wasabi is now closed.

Located in Levis Commons across from Poco Piatti, Bistro Wasabi seems to be a favorite of the Japanese restaurants in the Toledo area. The food is wonderful and the waitstaff is pleasant, but the temperature of the restaurant often seems to be a little low. While everything is kept very clean, obviously an important part of an enjoyable dining experience, the dining room has a certain sterile quality that seems to (in our experience) be inconducive to conversation.

As an appetizer we had edamame, a staple for us when eating Japanese food. Soy bean just seems to taste better when you call it edamame.

Our miso soup came without spoons - it seems the proprietor wants to convey a more authentic Japanese feel at Bistro Wasabi, and has ceased supplying spoons with the soup. I overheard another table asking for spoons, and the (nearly) embarrassed waiter offered that explanation. The diners weren’t too insistent, but they did seem to think the policy was strange.

For dinner we had two entrees. One was the Maki Special, comprised of California Rolls, Cucumber and Avocado Rolls, and the chef’s choice, which was made with broiled chicken and sesame glaze.

The other was the Spicy Peppercorn Ahi Tuna, seared and coated with a breadcrumb and peppercorn crust which was, through most bites, a pleasant balance of spice and sweetness (some bites were very peppery).

Bistro Wasabi, like most Japanese restaurants, is not cheap. The food is excellent, though, and is more than worth a try, but keep in mind that you may need to come with some conversation starters and a sweater.

We Recommend

We recommend the Maki Special, especially if you like rolls.

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