By Maddie Sievers
Campustown is home to a surprising number of sushi restaurants. If you can’t get enough of this delicious, bite-sized delicacy, you should know about the following sushi eateries at the University of Illinois. Whether you’re looking for something quick, cheap or atmospheric, each option boasts a unique dining experience.
Sushi Ichiban is truly Champaign-Urbana’s hidden gem of sushi. This restaurant offers a variety of classic sushi options along with many exciting tempura rolls. Some of their more unique flavors include teriyaki chicken and tempura shrimp. The tempura shrimp roll is different than typical tempura rolls because only the shrimp inside is fried instead of the entire roll.
What makes this restaurant so affordable are its lunch and dinner combos, allowing diners to choose two or three rolls of their choice at a very reasonable price. Each combo platter also comes with an adorable tiny egg roll. If you really like sushi or are very hungry, they even offer all-you-can-eat sushi! Ichiban’s menu also features many delicious noodle dishes, including udon and yaki soba.
If Sushi Ichiban were to be described in one word compared to other restaurants on this list, it would be affordable.
KoFusion is perhaps the most popular and innovative sushi restaurant on campus. It’s also often the most easily accessible. There are currently three locations in the Champaign-Urbana area: one in Downtown Champaign, one in Urbana on Gregory Street and one in the basement of the Illini Union. KoFusion incorporates many ingredients not typically associated with sushi, such as bacon, jalapeños, kimchi, and toasted coconut. They offer several unique options such as the “Yo’ Roll” (an entirely customizable roll) and the dollar sushi menu, comprised of several of the restaurant’s most inventive options. The Sampler is a great way to try all of these fun new flavors on one plate for just $6!
For comparison, one word to describe KoFusion is convenient.
Sushi Rock, conveniently located on Green Street next to Zorba’s and Mia Za’s, hosts a nice array of fancy rolls in a casual sit-down environment. This is also perhaps the most affordable sit-down sushi restaurant on campus, as it is not nearly as expensive as Sakanaya. Being seated by a waitress, having a menu to casually browse until your order is taken and having your food delivered right to your table all contribute to a dining experience that is very relaxed and easygoing. Sushi Rock also has many deluxe sushi rolls with exciting names, such as the Godzilla Roll, the Mango Martini Roll and the Gold Rush Roll. It is also set apart by its sashimi and roll combos, which pair a variety of different rolls with a few choice pieces of sashimi.
One word that sets Sushi Rock apart from other sushi restaurants is accommodating.