It's easy to fall hard for Rise Sushi and Sake Lounge. This Lakeview spot keeps it real with its stripped-down interior featuring light-finished floors, simple wooden tables and inviting French windows. You won't find much in the way of decor, because the focus stays where it should be: on your plate.
What you will find are a ton of salmon-inspired dishes like the restaurant's signature Rise roll with salmon, avocado, cucumber, tomato and spicy sauce. Another hot selection, aptly named "fire roll," takes salmon and jalapeno and then wraps it up in melted provolone. Even the standard cream-cheese-packed rangoons get a makeover when salmon replaces the common crustacean. Of course, Rise takes its less spice-tolerant patrons into consideration as well. Timid types should go for the honey roll with white tuna, cucumber and sesame honey sauce, rolled in crunchy tempura crumbs. Or they can make like Rise's interior and keep it simple with something from the sashimi list. Single sashimi selections range from sea bass and red snapper to squid and giant clam.
If you find yourself waiting for a table to clear, park it in the restaurant's sake lounge, where you can sip smooth libations while rifling through Rise's menu. Too hungry to wait? Start with something quick like an oyster shooter appetizer or calamari covered in a crispy sesame coating.
Average cost: $21-$30
Centerstage Reviewer: Stacy Warden