The McDonald's of Japanese Cuisine: RUSAN'S
It's a Friday night and im hungry. I wanna go out to eat, and my friends and I are trying to decide where to go. "I only have six dollars to spend, I dont want anything cute, no small plates., and I dont want to get dressed up!" Yells my boisterous friend from across the room. Hey how about Rusan's? You know, the Japanese place out on Moreland ave. I've never been, but like him, If I can get a good meal for under $10, then im game.
Rusan's is a Japanes restaurant serving everything from sushi to sake cocktails. Once we arrived we're seated in the middle of the room and handed multiple menu's. My first thought? What am I drinking? I flip open the menu and to my surprise all cockatails were under $5 and of course that put a smile on my face. "Kiwi Lady Killer," sounds inventive, so i'll give it a try. "Where's the rice?" "I want some fried rice! Don't chinese restaurants always sell rice?" Yells another boisterous peer from across the table. "Well first of all its Japanese, and yes they have rice." So, I order seafood fried rice cause I love seafood and i'm a rice eater. (its the geechee in me).
I had in front of me three menus and as I ordered rice from one I found a food on a stick menu. Yakitori, Tempura, and Kushi Age. I was immediately attracted to the salmon. Salmon on a stick was my choice, (in a future visit I tried the swordfish and the shrimp tempura. Quite tasty!) After ordereing and panting like a dog from hunger my " Kiwi Lady Killer" arrived. Sweet, green, not very strong, with a cherry garnish. Now sake is smooth but in my opinion not as strong as vodka and apparently costs much less. (Sake shots are $1) Although not strong, the "feeling" krept up on me sometime within the dinner. Finally my salmon yakitori arrived to the table covered in a sweet thin sauce. The salmon was wonderful; succulent, flavorful and just fell right off the stick into my mouth. After enjoying my salmon stick i ordered another and started in on my seafood fried rice. Shrimp, squid, scallops and egg were all hidden in the rice and was so good it made me tingly all over! Luv it! (They also have chicken fried rice, plain rice you have to ask for, and veggie fried rice to boot.) I didn't order dessert but at the other end of the table, my friend was enjoying a mountain of fried icecream. I made my way to that mountain and got a taste of fried dough with sweet cream. Imagine eating apple pie crust with Breyer's on top. Sweet.
Its 11:30 and im completely satisfied. So much so, that I ate at Rusan's 3 more times that month! I tried visiting the other two locations in Atlanta: Buckhead on Piedmont and Midtown all the way at the other end of Piedmont ave.Its like a moon shape. Also in Athens and Nashville.
I've spread the word to other friends and family to give it a try and I urge you to get your Yakitori on at, what some call, the McDonalds of Japanese: Rusan's Sushi and Japanese.