By Becki Coffy
There is something very special about sharing an evening out alone with one of your grown children. It’s a time to relax, catch up and enjoy each other again. I had the pleasure of dining out with my son, Tim, last week.
Since he is an ardent devotee of sushi and I am a novice eager to learn how to fully appreciate this delicate style of food, he chose the Heart Rock Sushi restaurant in Lighthouse Point to further my education.
Although this eatery has only been open for nine months, the owner, Ann Yamusenor, and her son, Moose, are no strangers to the business. Their Heart Rock Sushi restaurant in Ft. Lauderdale has been open for 20 years.
Moose was responsible for designing the menu style and the interior space of the Lighthouse Point establishment while Ann, head chef for the restaurant, was responsible for creating the extensive menu choices.
The ambience is one of total tranquility. Soft lighting, earth tones in shades of cream leather, brown flat rock and green plants instantly transform you to a relaxed state of being. The beauty of the space only added to the wonderful experience of the evening.
Since the menu is so wide-ranging, we decided to rely on the advice of the Chef, Ann, and allow her to make some selections for us. Our waiter, Faizal, was a wonderful guide for the evening and explained the dishes completely.
We began our journey with an incredible icy cold Asian pear martini made with fresh fruit and lemon peel. The clean subtle flavor of this unusual cocktail was delightful. You really must try this when you visit.
The shrimp dumpling appetizer, filled with a rich center and deep fried to a golden crispness, was an explosion of flavor … crisp, yet light. I found myself going back for more and more, and it will definitely be a staple on my next visit.
Next, Faizal served us the Bai roll that was filled with tuna, kani, roe, avocado and scallions all rolled in a thin slice of crunchy cucumber, topped with sesame seeds and served with a miso sauce, a wonderful start to my newly-found appreciation of sushi.
For our main entrée, we chose the grouper lightly-breaded and finished in rich, velvet smooth lemon butter sauce with the slightest hint of heat. The fish literally melted in your mouth.
We also shared a dish of Pad Thai shrimp served with stir-fry noodles, egg, bean sprouts, scallions and topped with crushed peanuts. The large shrimp were cooked to perfection and the crushed peanuts added the flavor punch that made the dish irresistible.
Finally, Faizal brought us something called the ‘first love lover’ roll. This dish was an enigma. It consisted of hot shrimp tempura, cool eel and cucumber wrapped in white rice, topped with fresh tuna and sprinkled with roe and crunchy tempura flakes. It was served with fresh ginger, wasabi, a spicy mayo and eel sauce. I finally realized what I had been missing all this time.
Just when we thought we couldn’t devour another bite, Chef Ann brought over their fried banana dessert. The creamy banana concoction was deep fried in a delicate spring roll and served warm with green tea and coconut ice cream, whipped cream and drizzled with chocolate sauce. It was a little glimpse of nirvana.
The Heart Rock Sushi Japanese Restaurant is located at 4460 N. Federal Hwy. in Lighthouse Point. Reservations can be made at 954-532-1763.
Not only is the atmosphere delightful and the food delicious, but The Heart Rock Sushi offers a happy hour daily from 3 to 7 p.m. that is not to be missed. Drinks and sushi rolls for $5 and entrees for $7 are all included in the happy hour.
What a great place to unwind and relax after a day at work or to treat friends and family to something really special! Put this one on your bucket list, you will be so glad you did. Until we eat again…