Texas Tasty Visits Lucky Robot
Lucky Robot is a Japanese Kitchen located right off of South Congress that offers the best sushi, ramen, dumplings, wagyu beef, to sake. They are the first sustainable sushi establishment found in Texas recognized by the James Beard Foundation’s Smart Catch program as a leader in marine life protection.
One of the most unique elements of Lucky Robot is their passionate effort to prepare their dishes fresh and in house. Everything that they offer is either locally sourced or natively source straight from Tokyo. Their goal is to create a fun and unique experience as your neighborhood Japanese Kitchen + Sushi Bar. And based on our first visit, they did all that and more!
Honesty, Lucky Robot was one of THE COOLEST restaurants that I have ever been to in my 19 years of life and there are a couple of reasons why.
Interior: Edgy. Street. Cherry Blossoms.
The moment you step foot into the restaurant, the vibe changes. Once you are inside, the ambiance and the overall mood completely takes over. One moment you may be in SoCo and the next, you’re surrounded by LED lights, cherry blossoms overhangs, swing sets, and lots of Japanese inspired furniture and wall art. It very much resembles what a visit to a Japanese Night Market would be like in the prime of cherry blossom season.
The moment we sat down; the series of shock continues. Once we arrived at our seat, the waiter placed what seems like small cotton balls on a plate. But the moment the cotton balls comes in contact with water it expands into HAND TOWELS. From there, we were directed to take a look at the menu, and you can access the menu directly off of a QR code from a plant!
I’ll be honest, the extent of my sushi knowledge is little to none. Everything on the menu all sounded good but very foreign so I had to ask a lot, a lot of questions before even ordering. We ended up ordering 5 items upon the recommendation of our waitress.
Wagyu Yaki Nashi
This is a Wagyu Short Rib glozed with lemongrass soy paired up with a side of Asian Pear, Nikkei Chimichurri, farm-to-table Sunomono, and mustard seed.
This is definitely a dish that you have to take your time with. There are only a few pieces of the wagyu short rib but each piece definitely made a mark. It was such a pleasant bland of savory and sweet, the meat was so soft that you barely had to chew. We took our sweet time with each piece of the beef. This dish was definitely a quality over quantity type of entrée.
Umi Miso Ramen
Ramen soaked in spicy miso seafood broth with a variety of striped bass, shrimp, Naruto Maki, baby corns, white onions, napa cabbage, and mushrooms.
I personally really enjoyed the ramen. The broth was on the thicker side, it had an extremely rich flavor that coats each part of the noodle. I really liked the kick that came from the spicy broth itself, there is almost like a hidden punch with each bite that you take. The variety of toppings that they had not only added onto the aesthetic but the taste itself. The bass and the shrimp complimented each other extremely well. The overall balance of this bowl was amazing, with just enough broth, topping, and noodles the entire time.
Prime Chirasi Bot
This was a mixture of different types of fish that includes Big Glory Bay King Salmon and 3 types of daily primate market sashimi over sushi rice. It also came with a side of avocado, cucumber, sunomono pickles, sesame, and 144-degree egg.
Although I am not a seafood connoisseur by any means, I can say wholeheartedly that this was the softest and most supple fish that has ever entered my mouth. I remember that as we were eating, we were quite literally trying to eat it as slow as possible to savor the flavors. Each piece of the fish just melts into your mouth.
This is a Wagyu flank steak, with shishito peppers, crisp fingerling potatoes, red onions, Nikkei chimichurri, and ponzu verde.
This dish was definitely flavor on type of flavor. In comparison to the other Wagyu entrée, this one had more texture to the meat. It was easy to chew but each bite had its own character and texture profile. Aside from the fact that it was extremely pretty to look at, the dish extremely savory. You can taste the blend of all the peppers, onions, chimicurri, and the verde working together to bring it all together. I remember that it was really dark so we couldn’t tell apart the potatoes and the beef, so it was like a little lottery to see who would get the meat.
Chomame Fizz Sake
A sake blend with butterfly tea infusion, peach, lemon, and brut.
I did not indulge in a drink, but my companion did. And I remember distinctly that the moment he took a sip, his eyes bulged out and he stared to exclaim how he would never drink Sake the same way.
The service was absolutely top-notch. Even during quarantine, there’s definitely a good amount of traffic going in and out of the restaurant, but they handle it extremely well. Everything was up to proper safety standards, all the employees wore masks, there were both outdoor and indoor seating. I think the service was what really tied the whole experience together. I had seen pictures of Lucky Robot plastered across social media so I was extremely excited to have the chance to visit. But going in, I literally had absolutely no idea as to what to get. I think my friends and I spent at least 20 minutes just looking through the menu, asking questions to the wait staff, and even after the dishes came out, we were trying to match it up to what we ordered.
But the staff was SO SWEET. They answered all of our questions whether it be about the food, the process, or the restaurant. She expressed to us how the employees go through months’ worth of training to understand the food that they serve and to ensure that they are able to provide the best experience possible for the customers.
Overall verdict, this is a great place to get a holistic serving of good food, good service, and experience. Although, the price is on the higher end, the quality of the food exemplifies the amount that you pay. So, the next time you’re looking for a nice place to eat and want to splurge and learn a little – visit Lucky Robot!