Food

Cheap Eats 2009: Kotobuki

Great food, low prices, lots of fun

Why go: Owner/chef Hisao Abe offers an unbeatable combination at his Beatles-playing walkup in Palisades: sushi that’s both cheap—$2.50 for a piece of toro—and high-quality.

What to get: Oshizushi, Osakan-style pressed sushi usually made with mackerel and served in a wooden box; seaweed salad; eel kamameshi, a kettle-cooked rice casserole; nigiri such as yellowtail, salmon roe, and flounder; spicy scallop roll.

Best for: A quick, quiet meal—the pacing can feel like it’s on fast-forward, especially when there’s a line of customers waiting at the door.

Insider tip: The kamameshi specials—$10.95 at lunch, $17 at dinner—are a true deal: You get eel, chicken, or vegetable casserole plus miso soup, sashimi (dinner only), and an array of small, panchan-like dishes.

Open Monday through Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday for dinner.

>> See all 2009 Cheap Eats restaurants here 

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.