The Finest Sushi In Town
Since I started reviewing restaurants a couple of months ago, I’ve made it a habit to stick to new establishments so readers would have the opportunity to know what places to try out (and of course which to avoid). However, I’m going to make an exception today because if there’s one place that deserves all the praise it can get (even though it’s been around for quite a while), it’s Shogun.
Much like the majority of the Lebanese public, I’m a sushi addict (shocking). I’ve pretty much tried every sushi place in the country and I have to say, Shogun is undoubtedly still my favorite. Truly there’s not a single sushi restaurant in Lebanon that can rival the spectacular quality of the fish served in this wonderful place. And since I discovered it a year ago, it still feels like a brand new experience every time.
Unlike most Japanese restaurants, the menu at Shogun doesn’t have pictures of every single roll and maki. This can feel overwhelming at first as you struggle to link the names to the visuals ingrained in your head, but the exceptional variety more than makes up for this omission. In addition, Shogun has quite a few interesting creations and they’re all uniformly delicious. The fish is undeniably fresh, the rice always crisp, and the makis immaculately prepared. The unagi (eel) in particular is a delight; I’m constantly trying to convince people to give this slimy fish a chance because its flavor is unparalleled.
The highlight of a Shogun dinner is the crunchy salmon salad. There’s a reason why every party dining at the restaurant always has one or two orders of this outstanding specialty on their table. Moist, visually gorgeous, and just plain scrumptious, it’s a true masterpiece and the crown jewel of a menu that never disappoints. It’s also worth mentioning that if you’re dining at Shogun with someone who isn’t a sushi lover, the place has a wide variety of Chinese specialties to choose from. I’ve tasted a few (the cashew chicken comes to mind) and they’re quite good as well.
Of course, dining at Shogun is not a cheap experience. If you want to enjoy your time (and ensure your belly is satisfied), expect to spend around $50 to $80 per person. But with top-notch service and quality this magnificent, I’ve never felt like the meal wasn’t worth it.
Shogun’s only drawback is probably its location. The fact that it’s located in Dunes (a center that has long lost its luster) means it’s unlikely that anyone will ever stumble onto it by mistake. Nevertheless, word-of-mouth has done the place wonders over the years as you’d be hard-pressed to find it less than jam-packed any night of the week. It’s amazing really but the consistent quality of the food means people always recommend it, and you almost always need a reservation to guarantee a table. Suffice to say, Shogun has a renowned reputation, and it deserves it.
With the tastiest and freshest sushi in town, Shogun is a marvelous choice for dining out and my personal favorite restaurant in Beirut.