Looking for some excellent sushi stops in Central Oregon? Bend is a significant drive from the ocean, but fortunately we have plenty of talented chefs that work hard to get the right ingredients to create innovative and delicious sushi, from tasty rolls to fresh nigiri and beyond. If you can’t go too long without your sushi fix, we have you covered. Here are 10 of our favorite sushi places in Bend that you can stop by, and why you may want to put them on your list right away.
Chi is a restaurant with a great mid-town location a little bit of everything, all delicious – but one of their specialties is sushi, with a broad menu for both rolls and nigiri that includes some unique options you may not have seen elsewhere. A favorite is the Last Samurai roll, which combines tempura jalapeno, unagi, asparagus, butterfish, and tempura veggies, topped with spicy salmon. This is a great stop if your family wants to try a variety of Asian cuisine – don’t skip past the “From the Land” and “From the Earth & Sea” portions of the menu to find innovative and delicious dishes.
2. Izakaya Ronin
Ronin has an excellent location on the westside close to Goodlife Brewing, with an incredible menu divided into Japanese-style small plates and more traditional rotating sushi menu, so fans will be able to choose the exact authentic Japanese dinner that they want. If you’re looking for something that really reminds you of Japan, it’s one of the best places in Central Oregon to try. However, their hours are currently limited and making a reservation is a very good idea.
3. Juno Japanese Sushi Garden
Don’t miss out on Juno, a cozy little corner inside the Podski food lot where they create incredibly delicious sushi with a surprisingly broad menu for its size. The passion project of Michi Nakanishi, Juno focuses on authentic Japanese options with an eye on tastiness and perfectly blended flavors that will have you forgetting about your soy sauce or wasabi. Juno also has a number of excellent appetizers and deals available throughout the week. Plus, the Podski food court is an easy source of beer or a variety of other cuisine if some people prefer an alternative.
4. Northfresh Sushi
Northfresh is an outstanding sushi food truck chain that began in Eugene, and eventually branched out to The Bite lot in Tumalo, and Midtown Yacht Club in Bend. They’re famous for their fresh sushi and innovative, Oregon-inspired rolls that you won’t believe came from a food truck. Of course, that also means that they’re often busy, so it’s a good idea to check the hours of the specific food truck before you head out. Even those who rarely eat sushi will love savory options like the Salem roll, while those interested in a lighter fresh fish experience will enjoy the Tumalo roll.
Located in the Cascade Village Shopping Center in northern Bend, Shinsei is a straightforward sushi joint that prides itself on swift service and simple, affordable rolls for those who prefer fresh fish over tempura (although there’s plenty of that, too). Their Salmon Creek and Spicy Prawn rolls are particularly worth a mention, although those who seek richer options will enjoy their variety of crispy rolls including the deep-fried Bend roll. It’s a good option for those who are hungry and serious about their rolls.
6. Sora Sushi
Located in the heart of downtown, Sora is a great pick for a sudden sushi urge while exploring Bend or for a quick pick up (their online ordering options are particularly easy to use) while you’re making plans for the day. It’s also great for larger groups with a good assortment of sushi and sashimi combination platters. It’s one of the largest sushi menus in Bend, so if you like lots of variety, you’re sure to find something to enjoy here.
Kanpai is a cozy sushi and cocktail bar on the Westside known for their delicious sushi options that will have you planning a second trip in no time. This is a particularly good pick for a date night or for those who plan on pairing their sushi with a course of sake as they eat. Make sure you take a look at the particularly innovative specialty rolls, such as the Hattori Hanzo with pepper seared tuna, tempura mango, and red curry peanut sauce.
8. Mio Sushi
Mio Sushi is located in the heart of the Old Mill District, making it an excellent stop for those who are touring the stores or walking the Deschutes River. Like Sora, it has a particularly large menu for those who prefer variety and is a good spot for smaller groups to make a reservation or stop by at any time throughout the day. Servings, including appetizers and salads, tend to be larger so you can easily share them with others.
9. Bend-O Bento
A mainstay in Bend’s Japanese cuisine for years, Bend-O Bento is famous for its Japanese lunches, perfect for a relaxing stop in summer after a morning hike or floating the river. The restaurant was a collaboration of Japanese citizens in Central Oregon following the Tohoku earthquake and resulting tsunami that struck Japan in 2011. What started as a nonprofit effort to raise funds quickly became a favorite stop for locals. The bento bowls and rice balls are a favorite, although the lunch-oriented menu rarely offers traditional rolls. Unlike other options, this is one stop that won’t be open for dinner.
10. Maki Maki
Maki Maki is a charming sushi food truck at The Lot, a perfect stop whether you are interested in a sushi lunch, dinner, or a large order ahead of time for a group. Their selection of tempura rolls is especially good, although there’s something here for everyone, including vegetarian rolls, rich rolls with cream cheese, and generous nigiri helpings.
9 Tips for Sushi in Bend
- Watch opening and closing times. Many sushi restaurants in the area only open for dinner, around 5pm, so schedule your plans accordingly. For popular restaurants, it’s a good idea to grab reservations if you are eating later or with a group. If you want more on-demand sushi for lunch, food trucks are probably a better bet, but be sure to check the days that they are open to learn more.
- When in doubt, ask a buddy what to try next. Bend has plenty of sushi fans, so if you’d like a second opinion, just ask around. People will be happy to point you to their favorite sushi track or sit-down establishment and explain why it’s the best sushi you can find. You’ll have your own list in no time!
- Curious about prices? They can vary a little but expect to pay around $9 for simple rolls and $15 to $20 for larger rolls. Nigiri is generally $6 to $10, as are many of the appetizers.
- Prefer poke? No problem. Poke is very popular in Central Oregon and easy to find: Many of the sushi places we mentioned also have a poke bowl menu, so you’ll have lots of options to try. There are also dedicated poke places to visit, such as the authentic Aina’s truck at Bevel Brewing or the highly customizable Poke Row in Northwest Crossing.
- Sometimes not everyone in your family or party will like sushi. You have two options here: Either find a sushi place like Chi or 5 Fusion that serves separate menus in addition to sushi or visit a food truck lot where people can order what they please from a variety of different options.
- If you like making your own sushi, we highly recommend stopping by Sebastian’s Seafood and Specialty Market for some of the freshest fish around (along with premade dishes). You can also stock up on plenty of ingredients at places like Market of Choice and Newport Market.
- Keep an eye out for specials! Local sushi places will often have specials based on what’s in stock and fresh. They may also offer special deals around happy hours, or even charity dinners that let you support a cause while enjoying great food.
- Are you crazy for sushi trains, where you can pluck dishes off of a conveyor belt? Most of Bend’s sushi restaurants are a little more intimate than that, but we’ve got you covered: Sora Sushi in downtown Bend is one of the few that offers a full sushi train for you to enjoy with friends and family. Trains are a good bet if everyone is hungry, and you don’t want to spend a lot of time waiting to dig into some appetizers or tasty-looking rolls.
- Picking up grocery store sushi to take home after a busy day? It can’t really compare to the sushi restaurants in Bend, but you can get good results by going to the right places. Newport Market is an easy recommendation, as is Sebastian’s, and Market of Choice’s options will work in a pinch.
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