Mana From Heaven

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I know what you’re thinking: 2 sushi posts in a row? What is this? A web-shill for the fishing industry? Nah, sometimes I get into a bit of a food rut, but why sit on good material?

When I moved from Sacramento a few years back, one of the things I missed the most was Mana Japanese Restaurant and Sushi Bar. That’s not to say San Francisco lacked fantastic sushi restaurants that I now miss having moved back to Sac. People get as fanatical about their choice of sushi restaurant, it seems, as about their choice of basketball teams (Lakers – there, I said it. Send complaints to: Metroblogging Sacramento, 555 Save It Street).

Mana is located across from a Target, way the hell out on Alta Arden in an ugly strip mall next to a check-cashing place. Don’t let that description put you off, though – great things come in plain brown siding, and Mana is one such thing. It’s a large, square, suburban restaurant – well decorated with touches of Japanese art, typical sushi bar lighting, and a back counter stocked with every imaginable variety of imported Japanese soft drink. There’s a player grand piano at the front that from time to time provides diners with a concert of old-standards – some cheesy, but none distracts from the treats rolled out by the happy sushi chefs who shout greetings at arriving and departing guests.

You can check out the menu here (update: my bad, the sushi menu isn’t available via that link). The prices are normal for the area and the type of cuisine and there’s no lack of variety on the sprawling menu. My favorite: the L&A roll which takes something arguably healthy and adds plenty of fry action. Can’t go wrong though, the thing is delicious.

For friendly service, ample choice, fresh, wonderfully prepared fish, and a calming ambiance that is great for dates or dinner parties, Mana gets 4 out of 4 fins.

Mana Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar in Sacramento; 2580 Alta Arden Expwy, Sacramento 95825; 916-971-0728

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