Bob Wasabi Kitchen is located in the 39th Street food region at 1726 W. 39th Street, Kansas City MO 64111 across the street from Chipotle. Bob Wasabi Kitchen is closed on Sunday and closed daily between 2:30 and 5:00 pm.
Bob Wasabi Kitchen is an unassuming restaurant in an unremarkable store front. This is a single location family owned and operated restaurant that opened in the Fall of 2015. It will not be immediately obvious that this is a special place. Typical 39th street parking challenges may dictate you park on a nearby cross street. Entering the restaurant you will find a small dining room of about 15 small tables and a long sushi style bar along the rear wall. Your eyes will immediately admire the assortment of fresh seafood on display on the sushi bar. A closer look will reveal unrecognizable fishy treats and you will begin to realize this is not your average sushi spot.
Behind the sushi bar were two chefs that would make occasional eye contact with patrons. I quickly noticed the calm and stillness of the chefs as they prepared their seafood delights. Waitress and staff were polished and professional and certainly unaware of my pending immature school boy reaction to the best sushi I have ever had.
The menu at Bob Wasabi is small including appetizers, rolls and several unique platters. Sushi fans will notice the recognizable sushi options like California and Philadelphia rolls priced between $7-$10 per roll in the Sushi Roll section of the menu. Don’t waste the trip on these staples and find your way to the Specialty Rolls section of the menu that include Hawaiian Roll, Rainbow Roll, Baked Hamachi Roll and more. You will be intrigued by the fact these rolls are priced between $15-$20. Admission, I haven’t had a $20 roll of sushi and I initially wondered if the food at Bob Wasabi could have value at these price points.
We enjoyed the seaweed salad and Poke appetizers. Poke is small sahimi plate tossed with soy vinaigrette and accenting veggies and extras. This was a great fresh bite and I would consider the meal portion of Poke as a future main course.
We selected three specialty rolls for the main course. The Caterpillar Roll featured broiled Unagi wrapped with avocado slices ($15). The Tiger Roll featured shrimp tempura and kani salad wrapped with Ebi and avocado($16). The Unagi Mango Roll features spicy Tuna wrapped with Unagi and fresh mango slices($16).
These rolls varied in texture and taste and each was remarkable. Each roll is spectacular in freshness, color and vibrancy. These rolls absolutely melted in your mouth leaving you with a wonderful satisfying reaction. The ingredients of each roll combined into a single unique taste that is best described as clean and fresh. I never felt like I had a mouth full of fish or avocado. The flavors are subtle and the ingredients are mild. Gourmet sushi can typically include overpriced fishy creations of giant cuts of sahimi that only appeal to hardcore sushi patrons with acquired taste. But these specialty rolls are sure to please both hardcore sushi fans and those that might consider themselves sushi amateurs.
The rolls were slightly warm indicating the freshness of the rice that was used for the roll. I learned later that some of the fish is intentionally warmed or braised. Eating this sushi was a learning experience on seafood preparation, sushi techniques and overall dinning. These quality and crafted sushi rolls justify the menu prices. Be warned that one meal at Bob Wasabi will make you realize your local sushi place that you have loved for years is total crap. This is the new measuring stick for Kansas City sushi.
The 39th Street corridor continues to delivery excellent food options and Bob Wasabi Kitchen is certainly the ascending Kansas City sushi king.