Owned by the fashionable minds behind the late night, DJ-infused Tsuki, Ringo is intended as a more moderately priced—half the damage of places like Katsu or Mirai—family-friendly option for its Lincoln Park customers, which is why you'll find a couple of kids choices on the menu along with the ultimate bonus: a BYOB policy.
With its 2006 remodeling came more seats (bumping capacity to 76) and a "kushi bar," which serves the Japanese version of shish kabob: grilled and skewered meats with dipping sauce ($1.50-$3.50). Try the Spicy Baby Tako Tempura (baby octopus).
As with all sushi spots, choice is on your side to the extreme at Ringo. Sushi lovers can load up on white tuna and marlin nigiri, raw fish haters will find seared alternatives (and any piece of sushi or nigiri can be cooked) and vegetarians enjoy a designated set of appetizers that better ho-hum edamame with bites like battered-fried sweet potatoes in tempura sauce.
Sushi vets will clap over the $11.50 Deluxe Sushi Combo, which includes eight pieces of nigiri and a tuna roll; wilder tastes take shape with the Dynamite Maki, which boasts tabasco among its shell fish, shrimp and avocado. Other items of interest include both udon (flour) and soba (buckwheat) dishes with neat add-ins like fried chicken nuggets and spinach.
Average cost: $21-$30
Centerstage Reviewer: Gavin Paul