Entrée offerings ($21 to $28) like veal osso buco, chicken teriyaki, and whole crispy red snapper are available, but my rule of thumb is to never order a large plate in a small-plate restaurant.

Possible exception: steaks, which here are split between churrasco and wagyu sections. The former forks over three meats for $39, or five for $44 (grilled hanger steak, rib eye, pork tenderloin, chorizo, and linquiça sausage). Best deal: the full-flavored picanha cut, with 14 ounces of top sirloin (with fat cap) for $26.

Wagyu A5 steaks are $18 per ounce with a four-ounce minimum (for the arithmetically challenged: that's $72). They come either ishiyaki-style, meaning cooked upon the namesake hot stone; or as toban yaki, which refers to the ceramic plate the meat gets seared upon, though it's served on a regular plate with organic mushrooms, charred green onion, and a garlic chip.

Wagyu gunkan with quail egg yolk
Wagyu gunkan with quail egg yolk

Location Info

Map

SushiSamba Dromo

600 Lincoln Road
Miami Beach, FL 33139-2916

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: South Beach

Details

SushiSamba Dromo

305-673-5337
sushisamba.com

Lunch daily noon to 5 p.m.; dinner Tuesday 5 p.m. to 4 a.m., Wednesday and Thursday 5 p.m. to 1 a.m., Friday and Saturday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 5 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Green bean tempura with black truffle aioli $7.50
Cinnamon oxtail gyoza $14
Wagyu gunkan with quail egg yolk $11
Suspiro limeno $8
Xin-xim of rock shrimp-stuffed chicken breast $12

View a slide show of SushiSamba.

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Any meat can be paired with sushi or sashimi at $10 per piece — or, for that matter, with a handful of à la carte sides such as coconut rice, purple potato mash, collard greens, and the buttery Peruvian corn that accompanies the anticuchos ($4 to $6).

The last space on the upper right-hand side of the board belongs to gunkan, a vertically presented type of nigiri sushi featuring nori wrapped around a base of rice topped by any number of foods. Here the garnishes include scallop with tobiko and jalapeño; foie gras with nashi pear and eel sauce; and wagyu beef dotted with sea salt and capped with raw quail egg yolk and crisp skinny threads of fried potato paille — a voluptuously smooth popper with mild crunch. Gunkan translates to battleship, as the dark nori packets resemble either hulks or smokestacks. (I go with the latter, but this is open to personal interpretation).

The cocktail list, as usual these days, encompasses inventive concoctions, but for $13 per (small) glass, one should be able to at least taste or feel some alcohol. A vodka-based Hakata drink of "Finlandia Grapefruit Vodka, yuzu juice, simple syrup and grenadine" tasted just like sweetened grapefruit juice; a "Kumori of nigori sake, shochu, gin, and muddled cucumber" seemed a shot of straight cucumber juice. It's one thing for the flavor of vodka to disappear, but gin? You're better off sipping the sake straight, exploring the noteworthy tequila selection, or indulging in some beer or wine. Your waiter can help with the selections, assuming you get one of the good ones on an uneven staff. It's a roll of the dice.

Suspiro Limeño is interpreted here as dulce de leche flan layered with port cake and crowned with roasted meringue ice cream and almond crumble. Other desserts such as mochi or warm chocolate banana cake will suffice, but if sharing just one, select the suspiro.Tuesday night Cosplay, a long-time Samba tradition, is when people dressed in outrageously wacky and colorful costumes act out some inner character in their head while whirling and dancing awkwardly about the room, as if on drugs. Actually, this occurs nightly here — the restaurant being located in South Beach and all — but on Tuesdays it gets synched to music.

SushiSamba is still loads of fun — and like some other pretty party types, it has more substance than meets the eye.

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3 comments
Bjork
Bjork

Roberto, why would you write such an absurd thing? You are slandering a writer you obviously do not know nor do you read his weekly column often, otherwise you'd know he makes every effort to be a fair, informed source for the consummer. He doesn't pander to PR types or anyone else for that matter. Lee Klein is not only one of the most honest people still standing in Miami, he's got the bruises to show for it. I suspect you are an angry cook who has a beef with the restaurant and thus takes a cheap shot at Lee. Rather than take this cowardly approach, why not stand up for your rights as a worker and try getting the Union active to support local workers in the restaurant and hotel sectors, who have zero representation in Florida and Miami in particular?

Robertomoreno
Robertomoreno

I am not a cook nor a chef nor own a restaurant. I have been following Mr lee for quite some time. He dosent know food and his reviews are biased at best.

 
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