Imagine that a guy that runs some of the biggest tourist traps on Fort Lauderdale beach were to open a big, fancy sushi restaurant. Oh wait, that's just what we have here!jump-->
What seems like forever ago, a sign was posted at this location "Opening Fall 2013". They didn't quite make it; Tsukuro opened last weekend. They weren't open for lunch initially, but today I noticed that they changed their hours, so off I went to the beach on one of the busiest weekends we see in this town.
On a day when even the worst restaurants in town have a crowd, there was no-one sitting at the bar inside. They have an indoor/outdoor bar; on a nice day outside seemed to be the choice.
The inside of the bar has the same motif as all of the other traps on the beach; bad music playing and trying to be more of a night club than a restaurant. It is an attractive space.
In the back is the obligatory open kitchen; ideas that Bokampers, Kaluz and Lobster Bar share. Theres a sushi bar here as well. No customers at peak lunch hour.
Tsukaru Sushi Bar
I asked about iced tea and the bartender started explaining their "flavors", which led me to just ask for a seltzer. $3.25 for a bottomless skinny glass.
You can buy sushi or sashimi 2 pieces at a time, but I went for a small plate and a side. I ordered the Hamachi Citrus and the "Wok Charred Bok Choy". The servers were telling me that the menus are getting jumbled daily, so there was no button on the POS system for the Citrus Himachi.
Since one is a side I figured they'd come out together, but not so. The Hamachi came out first.
Tsukuro Hamachi Citrus
This is why I don't go to sushi restaurants and why guys who can't even serve decent burgers open sushi restaurants; I just feel cheated paying $10 for 4 slices of fish. Since the menu had no description and the Hamachi has a jalapeno, I thought they brought me the wrong one, but apparently they both come with jalapeno. This took me about 30 seconds to eat. Not bad but nothing I'd run down to the beach for again. Not very citrusy. Plain lime juice would have been better.
Next came the Bok Choy.
Tsukuro Bok Choy
One of the bartenders seemed impressed with it; obviously she's never had the dish. Whoever made this has no idea how to cook bok choy; you don't serve it drowning in sauce. To me, "Wok Charred" implies that it's stir fried at high heat; this abortion just left the leaves waterlogged and tasteless. I tried fishing it out of the sauce before more damage could be done, but it was hopeless.
Tsukuro Bok Choy
You know a place is in trouble when you rely on New Times and Craigslist to find a "chef". I'd think that if I were to open a sushi restaurant I'd have a chef in mind before I started building it. This is typical Fort Lauderdale. The idea that any chef will do is pervasive here.
Oh well, at least I kept on my diet. $21.47. Adding insult to injury, they add a 15% gratuity, which makes zero sense considering the new law this year. First, just about everyone leaves 15%, and by using a forced gratuity, they have to pay their servers full minimum wage since the service charge can't be considered a tip. It saved me $1, so I guess I shouldn't complain.
On a day when every restaurant was packed; the new place was 2/3 empty. Don't expect things to change. There's no reason to pay these prices for this food.