Restaurant Review: Makani Sushi

Fusion Sushi has been ruling the Cairene culinary scene for quite a while.
Makani as a Sushi restaurant has been around for several years, nonetheless whenever I participate in a poll, or even just a decision among friends for the next sushi outing, it’s not always the first option for people to bring up… in some forums, if I don’t nominate it, no one else does…

I do in fact understand that. Sushi started out in Egypt quite some years ago (by that I mean more than ten) and Makani was one of the first sushi joints around. Back then, it was mostly straight forward, rather authentic – not a hundred percent, but close- sushi.
I remember my first sushi experience was exactly 8 years ago and it was at Makani. I know I loved the eel nigiri and the shrimp maki at first sight since.
Then arrived a new Sushi Giant and changed the face of the game… at this point Makani took a very long time to adjust, making it fall a little behind competitors.

The revised menu that started accommodating more and more fusion items, stayed nonetheless true to most of its old items as well, I believe in attempt to maintain current customers while attracting a different segment as well..

Over time, my hubby and I discovered our way into this menu, and soon enough we already had a list of favorites that is somehow a repeated order.
Their sushi is in fact so good, it inspired me to make a sushi-themed cake for myself πŸ™‚ (I am initially a cake artist, remember)

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What I find exquisite about Makani is its placement in the nieche market: it’s a commercial, fusion sushi place. It is not a fine restaurant, nor an authentic Japanese cuisine- so authentic sushi connoisseurs won’t classify it as Japanese in the first place, I believe.
And with such placement, it has a lot of offers and events going on.. particularly ones that won’t make you feel pressured to put your name on a list and come back 3 hours later when your table is ready, nor will they make you give your food a photo shoot until it’s cold to secure 50% off the bill (not that I don’t think this is a brilliant marketing idea).

Like that day they gave away all these cute sushi pairs for Valentine’s Day:

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So chances are, you will somehow get a fair share off your bill, if you go at the right day and the right branch – a schedule I know by heart now πŸ™‚

At such offers and prices though, you are still getting real good sushi and decent service.
Of course, since I happen to go there at least once a week, it happened once that the food quality and service were not up to the expectation, but I believe it happens in almost every kitchen. So when given another chance, they managed to impress me again and again, winning me over as a very loyal customer, or shall I say advocate.

So here’s my list of favorites:

Sesame Salmon Sashimi
Menu description: Grilled salmon wrapped with two kinds of sesame served with wasabi soy sauce.
My review: Pretty good Sashimi, the salmon is flavorful, but the cut could be improved to render it a little less chewy. All in all, a good taste from the sasame combination with the salmon, wasabi and soy.

Sumo (Fusion Roll)
Menu description: Shrimp, Avocado, Cucumber, Lettuce all wrapped with Rice, topped with grilled Volcano Shrimp.
My review: I love the Sumo Roll. The charring on the outside part of the roll, that is made of shrimp, dramatically contrasts the tender shrimps and avocados inside the roll. Perfect.
Spider Roll (Fusion Roll)
Menu description:Fried Salmon wrapped with Rice and Seaweed all fried together and served warm topped with Teriyaki Sauce and sesame seeds
My review: This is a staple in my order, but it is not too special to me. It takes up the role of the “bulk” in my sushi order, it fills me up (in a delicious way) but isn’t the jewel of my dish.
Spicy Sour Roll (Fusion Roll)
Menu description: Salmon and shrimp, all deep fried topped with spicy lemon mayonnaise and dill
My review: there’s little I can say about the love I have for this roll. It’s soft, it’s fried, it’s spicy and sour and has a bit of dill which is the best friend of every seafood. Delicious on every possible level. Always a favorite
Samurai Roll (Fusion Roll):
Menu description: Fried Shrimp Tempura and Cream Cheese, wrapped in Seaweed, deep fried & topped with Teriyaki Sauce and Sesame.
My review: Another lovely filler on my plate, but it’s my favorite filler! I am crazy about shrimps, and cream cheese so if you roll that up as sushi, you already won me.
Tip: a great roll for beginners! The sweet Teryaki sauce that comes with it is an extra treat.
Phili Shrimp (Fusion Roll):
Menu description: Fried Shrimps, Avocado & Cream Cheese wrapped in Rice & Avocado, topped with Teriyaki Sauce and Sesame Seeds
My review: a very nice variation of the samurai roll, so if you’re in for a little change, it just tops it with avocado, but that’s it.

Then we move on to the Nigiri section:
Sesame Salmon nigiri
Incredible combination of sesame, that is charred to perfection on top of amazingly seared salmon all on a bed of sushi rice.
volcano salmon nigiri
One of my favorites! A perfectly sliced piece of salmon, marinated to perfection and topped with a slice of avocado and spicy mayonnaise.
tiger shrimp nigiri
A tempura-fried shrimp on top of sushi rice. Not too complicated, but very very delicious.
Unagi (Eel) nigiri
Another one of my favorites, but sadly it’s not always around. When it’s available it’s a great piece of grilled eel fish, topped with teriaki sauce on sushi rice.

You can tell I am very passionate about this place and its menu.
You will be more even able to tell, when you see the pictures I took at several occasions for my favorite sushi order

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Go to Makani and enjoyyyy πŸ™‚

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