Wednesday, July 01, 2015

What's New at Chaya Downtown? Fish Straight from Japan and the Return of the Beer Garden

The patio beer garden is a fine spot on warm summer nights
Chaya Downtown is hosting a weeknight beer garden for the fourth year, featuring kushiyaki skewers and other items grilled on the outside patio, beer and pitcher specials and boozy popsicles. But what's new at the 5-year old restaurant is the Kaisen bar, a fresh seafood bar that replaces the sushi bar.
Chef Joji Inoue flies in a variety of fish fresh from Japan twice a week, including the scary-looking but delicious spotted knifejaw, orata, branzino, threeline grunt and opal eye. Oysters, lobster and crab are also sourced from the best regions and flown in several times a week. Fish is available grilled, baked in sea salt or deep-fried.
Stuart Haygarth's whimsical chandelier at Chaya
Sea Robin, grouper, bonnet fish and tilefish are just some of the hard-to-find varieties
Chef Inoue also prepares battera sushi -- the Osaka style layers rice and fish in a box for a compelling presentation. The Kaisen bar menu is served every night at dinner along with other Chaya specialties. The beer garden starts at 4, Monday to Friday; happy hour is every night until 8, one of Downtown's good values.
Chaya Downtown 
525 S. Flower St.

(I was invited to try this restaurant)

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