Chicago Japanese

Union Sushi + Barbeque Bar

December 11, 2011

Now THIS is how a Sushi restaurant (or any restaurant for that matter) should be.

We came in starving after a winery tour looking to sate our inebriated appetites and continue letting the good times roll.

We took one look at the menu, deemed it overwhelming, and asked our server, Dan (later “Dan The Man”) to bring out his favorite dishes and libations for us. As far as the drinks go I have no idea what boozy concoctions Dan fed us except that the first drink he brought had a hint of basil and was unbelievably good, on par with some of my favorites at Violet Hour.  The second had egg whites and was almost as good as the first. Dan the Man.

The food was spectacular:

First off when you sit down they bring you edimame with Parmesan cheese smothered all over it. I have never had edimame like this before. I don’t want to get hung up on the edimame, but they were some damn good green beans.

Buffalo Duck Wing — What!? Buffalo duck wing!? This was so good — the duck was cooked perfectly and was the biggest duck wing I have ever seen. The tempura breading was perfectly crispy, and the buffalo sauce made you want to lick the bowl. Get this.

Sashimi Cup — Raw salmon, avocado puree, and ponzu sauce. Palatte cleansing, fresh, fun to eat (you mix everything together and it looks really cool). Another must-get.

Hokkaido and Chesapeake Bay Sushi — I HIGHLY recommend the Chesapeake Bay. I have never had a sushi roll wrapped in collard greens. I could eat this right now and it’s 9:00am. The Hoakkaido was great as well, but the Chesapeake was the obvious winner for us.

Spare Rib – The BBQ sauce was the perfect blend of spicy and tangy. The meat was fork-tender. The presentation looked like something out of a food-porn magazine.

Off Menu Fish Dish — After a few rousing compliments about his food and drink choices Dan brought this out for us. He said it was off menu and something he wanted us to try. It was a piece of seared Skate with a mixture of fried onions and chilis on top and I think some sort of miso sauce. Dan not only hit it out of the park, but right then and there sealed Union as a five-star restaurant for me.

BBQ Prawns — Simple presentation: just perfectly cooked prawns with a nice spice rub. Delicious.

The bottom line is this: there are those rare restaurants that have such a good combination of food, drink, and service that they make you want to come back the next day to do it all again. Union is one of these places.


November 1, 2011

January 15, 2012




I just don't want to look back and think "I could've eaten that."

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