Fans of Brooklyn’s Momo Sushi Shack won’t have to book a flight to New York for their famous fare. Those of us in the 305 can get a taste of the Michelin Guide-recommended restaurant right here at the Mondrian on South Beach. The sushi shack has popped up in the hotel’s Sunset Lounge for the next few months to serve up tasty rolls along with hearty entrees and a jaw-droppingly good bar program.
On the menu, you have your usual temaki, maki and sashimi options. If you’re going this traditional route, we strongly suggest you take a closer look at everything in the maki section. Here’s where you’ll find some of the vegetarian options that Momo is known for.
We were particularly fond of the Mina roll, which features a variety of chopped organic vegetables, homemade tofu cream cheese and shiso. What caught our attention the most was the texture. The vegetables surprised us with their crunchiness; it was a refreshing change of pace from the sushi we’re used to. With vegetables these good, we hardly missed the protein.
For people who want something meatier, there’s the Kani roll: sweet, succulent crab mixed with sweet mango and a bit of wasabi for some spice. It was definitely a favorite of the night.
While the other traditional offerings were good, we don’t want to spend too much time on them. Why? Because where Momo Sushi Shack shines is its less traditional offerings. Case in point: the Bombs.
As you probably already guessed, these decorative round sushi resemble the namesake circular item. And the name is appropriate: They explode in your mouth with a ton of flavor. Our personal favorite was the Spicy McBomb, which was made up of yellowfin tuna, wasabi cream sauce, cucumber and katali. At first, you get a nice, clean taste of the tuna that gives way to spice as it continues down your throat. Similarly, the Una Bomb — unagi, cucumber and eel sauce — makes a memorable impression; it tastes like chicken (always a good thing).
Although you only get two pieces with your Bomb order, don’t be discouraged. These balls are noticeably larger than your standard sushi pieces; two orders will probably fill you up.
Another eye-catching section on the menu is Gunkan, which are warship-shaped sushi. There are only two to choose from, but they make up for it with a variety of ingredients. The tuna tartar sounds like a delicious science experiment with chopped bluefin chutoro, pine nuts, avocado and quail egg. If you get it, make sure to eat it all in one bite; the eclectic mix of flavors should ideally leave you floored. Any of our fellow bloggers who’ve tried it can vouch for that.
Despite stuffing ourselves with rice, we still had room for one entree. And the one entree — the teriyaki skirt steak — delivered on all fronts. In fact, we wanted to try all the other entrees to see if they were as good as this one. That’s how you know you have a great dish.
We had our meat medium rare, and we can honestly say it was some of the best steak we’ve had in a while. And the sides didn’t disappoint either: incredibly creamy sweet potato mash and incredibly delectable Brussels sprouts.
Of course, you need something to wash all this down. That’s where the stellar bar program comes in. You’ll find several out-of-the-box concoctions worth your while, most of them martinis. The Yoko Ono is a must — you haven’t had anything like it. There’s sweet pea-infused Belvedere vodka, yuzu sake, pressed lemon, raw sugar syrup and an eel sauce-soy salt rim that changes the cocktail’s taste altogether. You seriously can’t go wrong with the martinis; we tried all of them and they’ll all make you wish that Momo was a permanent fixture.
As of right now, though, it seems that Momo Sushi Shack will only be around through October. That being the case, we suggest you get there sooner rather than later. Otherwise, you’ll be finding yourself booking a flight to New York.
Momo Sushi Shack is located at 1100 West Avenue inside the Mondrian Hotel on South Beach. For hours of operation and other information, visit their official website or call 305-514-1500.