100 Very Best Restaurants 2015: No. 93 Kaz Sushi Bistro

Kaz Sushi Bistro. Photograph by Chris Campbell.

Chef Kaz Okochi’s Foggy Bottom sushi spot has been around since 1999, and he’s still drawing plenty of customers with precise slices of high-quality fish. Okochi paired salmon nigiri with mango purée long before the onslaught of Japanese fusion, and his signature combinations such as sake-poached scallops or torch-charred salmon belly are still exceptional. Small plates—such as umami-packed slices of calamari, uni, quail egg, and truffle-soy sauce—go beyond the typical lineup of gyoza and tempura.

One caveat: A patchwork meal of these slight bites can add up quickly. More wallet-friendly options can be found at lunch, where a business crowd packs tables for generous bento boxes. Dessert tends to be skippable at many Japanese spots, but it’s worth browsing the playful roster of sweets.

Don’t miss:

  • Creamy seaweed salad
  • Brussels sprouts with mint and ginger
  • Seared tuna with chili and daikon
  • Bonito with garlic chips
  • Bay-scallop ceviche
  • Seared baby octopus
  • Ginger-ice-cream sandwich
  • green-tea tiramisu

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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.

Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.