Food and music have always gone hand in hand, at least when John Popper had one free of cheeseburgers, so he could play his harmonica. For sushi with a jazz twist, hit Thelonious Monkfish, opening Wednesday.
Cleverly playing off the name of the famed American pianist while boasting the tagline "jazz for the palate", TM's a 49-seat sushi/Asian fusion joint (from the guy behind the literally right-around-the-corner Pepper Sky's Thai Sensation) situated in a former dry cleaner that's been elegantly apportioned w/ 19 tables handmade from reclaimed old growth oak, a 7-seat sushi bar, elevated two-table sit-on-the-floor area, and walls of stacked slate stone, though it likes to point out that its (personality) also rocks. Choice rolls include the spicy tuna tempura & cucumber'd C Jam Blues; the Sophisticated Lady (shrimp topped w/ tuna and eel sauce); the multi-fish Bebop rolled w/ smoked salmon, shrimp, scallops and crab; and an inside-out shrimp tempura & gobo number wrapped in nori called the Robin Hood -- which thankfully, isn't made with Crowe. Costner rules!! There're also fusion delights like clover honey-glazed pork tossed in Prik Khing curry paste and served w/ garlic mashed and Chinese kale stir-fried in oyster sauce; a Hot to Trot Fillet (crispy tilapia in a sweet & sour sauce w/ jasmine rice); and egg noodles, cabbage, and onions wok-fried in shiitake mushroom sauce called Noodles Nirvana, which presumably is served in a Heart Shaped Box.
From small bites to big groups, there're starters like Fever Wings and Coconut Curry Fries to accompany create-your-own stir-fry/curry options and massive Monkfish party boats that serve anywhere from 42 to 100 pieces of sushi, though serve that to Johnny P, and he'll insist that, unless you bring out 300 more, you're totally giving him the Run Around.
Published: February 18, 2011 at 4:00am EST
524 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02139
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