Wasabi Sushi Bar & Asian Bistro

Wasabi Asian Bistro and Sushi BarIn my often expressed opinion, Tyler has been in desperate need of a new sushi restaurant, in particular, one that would be open for lunch. My sushi dance to the gods must have worked, because now Tyler has two brand new Japanese restaurants, both serving sushi and both open for lunch. Strangely enough these two restaurants opened their doors in the same week and hopefully aren’t taking too much business from my first sushi love, Shogun’s.

Wasabi Sushi Bar & Asian BistroWasabi, located beside Karen Horton in the location formerly occupied by San Francisco Oven and Fiore (RIP), opened their doors last Saturday, May 29. I snuck away from an especially busy day at work this week to check it out as I needed a mental refresher to re-energize my brain. We arrived at noon and the restaurant was busy but not crowded. The hostess led us to a booth where we began to look over the menu. I saw some great things but was unsure whether the food could live up to the description. We decided to go with the salmon ceviche to start with and the Tyler TX and Hawaiian rolls. The salmon ceviche came out first. In a word, it was delicious! I especially loved the fresh taste of the salmon mixed with the sweet chunks of mango. I can’t wait to try this dish again. The rolls came out next and they were equally fabulous. My favorite was the Hawaiian. It had yellowtail rolled with avocado and pineapple. It tasted summery and refreshing. The Tyler TX roll (shrimp tempura, cream cheese, and jalapeno, baked topped with crab mix, salmon and spicy mayo, with unagi sauce, chirachi, tempura flakes, scallions, and masago) was great too.

Salmon CevicheI am still so impressed by my experience at Wasabi and can’t wait to go back. Good location, great service, and totally awesome food have pushed Wasabi to the top of my must-try list for those of you who love Japanese food. I can’t wait to hear what all of you think about it.

Wasabi Sushi Bar and Asian Bistro
5617 Donnybrook Avenue
Tyler, TX 75703-6111
(903) 939-0211




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  1. We really enjoyed Wasabi! The sushi was awesome and if you like hot and sour soup you must try theirs! It is the best. One thing that I would change is the size of the tables. They seem really small. They sat 5 of us at this itty-bitty table and it was very cramped.

  2. Happy to hear that a new sushi source was available in Tyler that might be an alternative to the existing mediocrity I headed to Wasabi a mere 2 weeks after it had opened.

    I liked the decor immediately and the server, though clearly still learning the menu, was bright, pleasant, and working hard to perfect his skills.

    But when presented with the menu I was dismayed to find it composed solely of absurdities like the previously mention “Tyler Roll.” This sort of thing bears as much resemblance to sushi as Velveeta does to cheese.

    Luckily, in rather faint print at the end of the list of faux sushi was the statement that nigiri sushi and sashimi could be ordered from a separate sheet.

    We ordered half a dozen choices although one, tamagoyaki, was not available and were pleased, if not overwhelmed, by all.

    An order of “pot stickers” was also had as a quality control selection on the other menu items and turned up what appeared to be the usual industrially mass produced variety brought in rather than being prepared in house.

    All in all the experience was pleasant enough and worthy of a repeat visit to see where this restaurant goes.

  3. I ordered the cucumber wrap roll. It was really good but quite expensive considering it was $13 for 4 pieces. The miso soup was very brothy and quite delicious. The dessert was quite refreshing and light. A good place to grab lunch.

  4. I hate to say that I was not impressed. I so wanted to be!
    We arrived this evening, 6ish, and there were not many patrons. We walked in and were immediately greeted and seated. The hostess was extremely pleasant.
    The waitress followed in less than a minute, she was equally pleasant- to start.
    As we surveyed our menus she took our drink orders. It seemed to me that she became very upset when we questioned her about the menu and offerings. She was cold and unfriendly the remainder of the meal and never spoke, even as she hauled off the last 2 pieces of the roll we ordered- without asking!
    The wonton soup was great, as was the TexasRanger roll.
    Our entrees were a bit different. His Moo Goo Ka Pan was so limp and lifeless. The sauce had NO flavor and all that accompanied it was a bowl of cold, bland “fried rice”(maybe we are spoiled to Shogun!)
    My Crisp Shrimp sounded very appealing on the menu- lightly battered, with a sweet garlic sauce… Not so much. It was lightly battered, but it was completely saturated with a thick syrupy goop that was so sweet I could hardly eat more than 3 pieces. There was no garlic flavor at all in spite of the fact that it had ?fresh garlic slivers? in the sauce. The one good thing about the shrimp was that it was served with 2 asparagus stalks- the sauce was wonderful on them!
    It cost us $60 to leave and the waitress couldnt even tell us thank you.
    I’m not one to grip about price, if the food is worth the money. We love to go to Jake’s- and I have NEVER been disappointed there. But at Wasabi- even the tea is marginal and for $3 a glass?
    I doubt we go back, unless it is for lunch, and only sushi- with water.

  5. The good:
    Very nice atmosphere.
    The fish was fresh (Wednesday night).
    Crab wontons were tasty.
    California roll was pretty good.

    The bad:
    Tuna roll & salmon roll were tasteless.
    Mongolian-flair beef was tasteless.
    “fried rice” was just rice with soy sauce on it.

    2/5 Stars for this first visit. I’d be willing to give it another try though.

  6. Not a big fan. The pad Thai smelled like pet urine when it came out and it was all I could do to put it in my mouth. It tasted ok, but not the best. Not sure I will go back…

  7. You don’t go to a Japanese restaurant to eat Thai food! I thought every foodie knew that? Anyways their food is good & its nice to have a quaint Sushi lounge like this in “Uptown” Tyler. It would be nice to see them expand into downtown sometime in the near future. Live music would also be a plus, maybe a DJ spinning some Deep House or Retro? I can keep wishing right? How soon I forget I’m in Tyler, Texas & not Dallas, Houston, Chicago, NYC, or LA.

  8. I enjoyed Wasabit alot! My girlfriend and I have been two or three times now and we love the sushi. The only thing I didnt like was the size on the tables. We usually order three or more rolls between the two of us and with the drinks it pretty cramped. Also, alot of the tables seem like they are too close to the walk way. Servers and other guests were squeezing by and brushing against us sometimes. Not a big issue but it could be a lil more roomy. As far as the sushi goes…way better than Shogun. And the atmosphere seemed more fun. Overall Wasabi gets a 3.5 out of 5. Good place to go in Tyler.

  9. It’s great, I will never go to Shogun again, it’s about time someone to bring in some real sushi!

  10. Great food and service.
    Best description is YUMMY!
    Music on the patio would be great!

  11. I have eaten here a couple times and just stuck with sushi both times. Very good to say the least. Sorry but Shogun’s and Yamoto’s sushi isn’t even in the same league at Wasabi’s.

  12. Place needs a deep cleaning in a hurry or it won’t pass its next health inspection…a little touch-up paint would go a long way, also…Wasabi is off our family’s “To Go” list.

  13. New favorite place for sure! Went there with my husband and we had the crunchy shrimp, some kind of steak dinner, the Wasabi sushi roll, and the Wasabi rainbow dessert! It was all so good. And we only spent $50. It might sounds a lot, but not for what you got!

  14. Wasabi’s is horrible now. I used to love it but it has changed and not for the better. It’s food is lousy. I was also treated horribly as a customer by the management. I don’t mind paying over 100 bucks but the food better be worth it. It’s not. They are too expensive for the cheap food they put forward. Fried Chilean Sea Bass in Sweet and Sour sauce? Really? Not worth it at all. Go somewhere else. Awful. Ugh.. I know that wasn’t Cjiliean Sea Bass either. It was Tilapia deep fried but sold as Chilean Sea Bass. Crooks. I hate getting ripped off. I love Sushi but will have to go elsewhere. Brookshire’s sushi is better now. This place burned my bridge. Beware.

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