Sora Sushi & Roll in Covina

After a couple of restaurant groups were didn’t have much staying power at the site of the former Sam Woo BBQ on San Bernardino Road and Azusa over the years, I hope the new inhabitants, Sora Sushi & Roll, will have better luck.

After a few colleagues made a few return trips there for lunch, I thought I would give the new Japanese cuisine a try myself to see what they had to offer.

Though there are many Asian restaurants in the neighborhood, there haven’t been too many that have such a variety of sushi and rolls offered, and taste good too.

Although the teriyaki plates and combination platters were very tempting, I felt it only fair to give the sushi rolls a try.

With everything from a simple California or tuna roll to the specialty, fresh, tempura and baked rolls, I grew hungrier as I read the description of each roll. I finally settled on the Alaska roll (spicy scallop inside, topped with salmon and avocado and rice) and a spicy tuna roll.

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Sushi and roll orders come with a cup of miso soup and salad. The soup was perfectly temperatured for me to enjoy right away, I would have liked more tofu pieces but the broth was seasoned well for a tasty, warm start to my meal.

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The small salad was a simple mix of greens with radiccio and carrot. The dressing, not knowing exactly what it was, was very tasty with a slight tangy and light flavor.

The Alaska roll ($8.95) was beautifully displayed and it tasted as good as it looked. The spicy scallop had a nice tender kick, not too strong, and the salmon and avocado was a nice fresh and cool balance to the roll.

The spicy tuna ($4.95) cut roll had a little more heat but was still not overwhelming the rest of the flavors in the roll.

The rice in the rolls were cooked just right so they stayed sticky to keep the rolls in place. A good indicator of the sushi chef’s talent.

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I was pleasantly full with the size of the rolls but the dessert was so tempting, I ordered some strawberry mochi ice cream to go ($2.50 for two pieces) – perfect ending to my Sora experience.

Although it can get pricey, I will definitely have to return to Sora to try the rest of the menu, starting with the Jalapeno Bomb and Soft Shell Crab in their Little Bites menu.

Sora also offers salads, sashimi combos, noodles, bowls, tempura plates, and party platters.

The restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and from 4 to 9 p.m. on Sunday.

Sora is located at 519 N. Azusa Ave., Covina, 626-332-1201.

Microwaved miso soup

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A few weeks ago, I went to Sushiya, a Japanese restaurant in the Eastern portion of Pasadena. According to a few reviews I read on Yelp!, it sounded like a decent place to go. And it was. The sushi chefs were nice, the waitress was friendly, and the food was ok. It definitely wasn’t the best quality sushi I’ve had, but it was extremely inexpensive. The sushi rolls didn’t taste bad, but they weren’t great either. This is the type of restaurant that’ll satisfy a cheap and quick sushi craving but not good enough for a “night out.”

Then comes the miso soup. I didn’t order it, but a table of women next to us did. First, I heard the “ding!” of a microwave from inside the kitchen. Moments later, the waitress comes out with three bowls of miso soup.

Is it OK to microwave miso soup?

Sushiya
2525 E. Foothill Blvd. # 2
Pasadena,
CA
91107
(626) 795-1311