If you’re tired of the same old family restaurant, treat yourself and your kids to a fun night out at SUSHISAMBA Rio. Definitely more than the “raw fish” my sons feared, this hip spot on Wells Street offers a fusion of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian cuisines. So sashimi and ceviches are mixed in with skewers of grilled meat and fruit.
Chef de Cuisine, Dan Tucker, is himself the father of a toddler and understands the challenges inherent in enjoying a night out downtown. He is conscious of keeping the restaurant’s food not only fresh and delicious for adult customers, but colorful and palatable for youngsters.
The kids-only bento boxes (complete with child-friendly chopsticks) offer layers of food discoveries, including new presentations of purple potatoes and corn, along with the all-time favorite, food on a stick. My sons tried maki rolls for the first time, with mixed results. While my 9-year-old loved dipping them in his own dish of soy sauce, his younger brother didn’t care for the unusual texture.
As first-time customers, we were heavily dependent on our server to guide us through the menu choices. She was extremely friendly and knowledgeable in figuring out appealing options. I decided on a variety of (cooked) appetizers and was completely wowed by the mini lobster and beef tacos with spicy dipping sauce. My husband went “all in” with the night’s special samba rolls, a completely raw entrée, and really enjoyed the flavors and textures.
While my husband and I were too full for dessert, our sons loved their samba sundaes (part of the kids’ meals) with their great presentation of tiny brownies, milk shakes and ice cream.
SUSHISAMBA is becoming an increasingly popular family destination for early weekend dinners, so you may want to make a reservation. Also, ask about the Sunday brunch with special kids’ activities.