You know gentrification is settling in when a posh sushi place moves in down the block from Starbucks in a Hispanic neighborhood. And rather than just upping the population of Logan Square's non-taqueria eateries from, oh, six to seven, Hachi's Kitchen raises the chi-chi factor exponentially. From the sunken lounge entry to the absentee sushi bar (replaced by a bar stocked with booze), this is a destination spot that should draw sushi-lovers from beyond the 'hood's boundaries.
Chef/owner Jim Bee (of Lincoln Park's Sai Cafe) brings a menu packed with options: in addition to the edamame and miso standards, you'll find appetizers like the ahi poke, diced yellowfin tuna mixed with shallots, scallions and spicy sesame oil. Rice and noodle dishes and a smattering of entrees (like the Chilean sea bass cooked with jalapenos) please those who'd like to avoid the sushi, but really, why would you?
Incredible freshness is markedly apparent, making nigiri and sashimi the way to go. The pieces, which run $2-$3 on average, include a savory creamy spicy scallop, escolar (super white tuna) and lobster. The standard maki includes, well, standards like salmon with avocado and unagi maki. Fancier specialty maki runs $6.50-$13 and includes the tako sansai, with marinated octopus and mountain veggies served spicy or mild. Wines, sake and beer will quickly up your tab, but that shouldn't cause much distress: this is definitely a spot for dates, and one where you should expect to lay down more than $30.
Average cost: $10-$20
Centerstage Reviewer: Kate Schwartz