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Raku, Pan-Asian on Woodmont Ave. (Bethesda) and Wisconsin Ave. (Cleveland Heights) - Dupont Closed and Rebranding as Rakuya


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Last night, we went to Raku in Bethesda again. My wife and I always seem to enjoy their cooking. I've heard not so great things about the Dupont Circule location so we always trek up to Bethesda. Anyone have opinions on the Dupont outlet?

As for our meal, we started off with their Tuna Tartare which blew us away. It is an amble size portion of tuna, a very nice green, citrusy accompanying sauce and a few slices of perfectly crisped, but not toasted, baguette. They also include a small green leaf salad with a nice vingarette that has a bit of a zing. This was the first time I tried this dish and I wish I had ordered it all for myself as an entree.

We also had a yellowtail and scallion roll for appetizer. It was very good. We usually find their sushi to be good quality.

My wife had their Tokyo Dashi soup for an entree. She chose to have it with udon (big white wheat) noodles and vegetables and tofu. My wife loves this soup and I'm a big fan too. You can pick what types of noodles or meat or fish you want in them. It doesn't matter though because the broth is the same and it is the best part. It is a medium brown color that has a rich flavor that manages to feel light in your mouth too. It is also a steal at around $6-8 for a big bowl.

I wasn't super hungry so I had their "healthy tofu" salad which is actually quite large and it was very good. It has lots of cubes of soft, silken tofu that is very fresh and then a melange of different salads veggies. Some western: lettuce and shaved carrot and peanuts and some eastern: seaweed salad. It has a citrus vinagrette too which may be yuzu flavored. A nice dish which would probably be a good appetizer to share.

Overall, another nice visit. The only two downside to Raku is that it is often busy with waits and it can get loud when full, but it is much more bearable than some other places.

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My wife had their Tokyo Dashi soup for an entree. She chose to have it with udon (big white wheat) noodles and vegetables and tofu.

That is one of the best dishes on the menu. Wish I could go have a bowl of that tonight rather than meeting friends at Matuba. :)

eta: boy do I wish we'd gone to Raku. :) The udon noodle soup at Matuba is skanky.

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Don --

What makes you say that Raku/Bethesda is overrated? I find it to be right up there with Kaz and Sushi Ko in quality; my only complaint is noise/long waits, and sometimes spotty service (though our last few trips we've had better luck with the waitstaff).

Among our favorites dishes are:

- the tuna tartare, with peanuts and topped with sesame seeds, served with a wasabi sauce, bread, cornichons and a salad

- (occasional special) toro tartar, wrapped like a sushi roll but with cucmber instead of rice, topped with caviar and salmon eggs and a spicy sauce

- (in season in the summer) heirloom tomato salad

- yellow tail three ways

- scallops w/mushrooms and a cream sauce

I'm not saying the entire menu is fabulous, but the quality of the fish is always great and many of the dishes are creative. For the price range, it's one of the area's absolute best. Then again, I'd say the same thing about Zaytinya, and I like 4 Sisters too.

I'd agree with the others: stay away from Raku in Dupont.

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Don --

What makes you say that Raku/Bethesda is overrated? I find it to be right up there with Kaz and Sushi Ko in quality; my only complaint is noise/long waits, and sometimes spotty service (though our last few trips we've had better luck with the waitstaff).

You know what? Out of fairness to Raku, I'm going to retract my statement. I haven't been to the Bethesda location in a good two years, to be remedied shortly...

Cheers,

Rocks.

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You know what? Out of fairness to Raku, I'm going to retract my statement. I haven't been to the Bethesda location in a good two years, to be remedied shortly...

Cheers,

Rocks.

May I recommend the Tokyo dashi with udon, tofu, and vegetables? :) It's good comfort food, anyway.

Come to think of it Raku is a "one dish" restaurant. I haven't had anything other than that soup in about five years. The place may be otherwise awful and I wouldn't know it.

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May I recommend the Tokyo dashi with udon, tofu, and vegetables? :) It's good comfort food, anyway.

Come to think of it Raku is a "one dish" restaurant. I haven't had anything other than that soup in about five years. The place may be otherwise awful and I wouldn't know it.

This is my exact experience. I have never had anything but the soups there, and almost always the Tokyo dashi (with occasional forays over to the curry). It's one of our favorite winter lunch spots.

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our experience is that this is an okay restaurant, sometimes really good, other times...

the problem here is that they can really go overboard and pile things on. we haven't been here for at least several months, and sushi-ko is one of our excuses (it's only a few blocks away from home, and we don't get there nearly as often as we should). but if you want to see what i mean, and it's still on the menu, order the bananas foster. i'm not saying it was bad, but it was definitely over the top.

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Agreed. We usually stick to the curry soups--they are gigantic, and really all you need for a meal. They are also considerably cheaper than the rest of the menu (maybe $10-$12?). Although, if I am in the area for lunch, I get the eel bento box. Not a bad deal for $12.

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/big bump/

Dinner last night at Raku was a very pleasant surprise. The lines haven't shortened but we were sat within 5 minutes of our reservation time. The tabels are very close together so don't go if you are looking for privacy or romance. The food makes up for it all.

We started with a pumpkin ginger soup that was amazing. I don't like pumpkin but am craving this soup a day later. It was creamy with the ginger bringing out the pumpkins sweet flavor. We also got the tuna tartare described below. It hasn't changed and was delicious.

- (occasional special) toro tartar, wrapped like a sushi roll but with cucmber instead of rice, topped with caviar and salmon eggs and a spicy sauce

For our mains we had a the veggie bento box and grilled sea bass with a miso sauce. The bento box contained what you would expect:6-7 pieces of nicely fried tempura, a veggie pring roll, veggie sushi, and a salad. The fish was perfectly grilled: nice crunchy char protecting soft, flaky, moist fish. It was a nice sized piece, enough to finish. The strings of sweet potato on top were unnecessary

All in all a pleasant surprise. The soups looked delicious so we will be back to try them out as the weather gets cold.

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/big bump/

Dinner last night at Raku was a very pleasant surprise. The lines haven't shortened but we were sat within 5 minutes of our reservation time. The tabels are very close together so don't go if you are looking for privacy or romance. The food makes up for it all.

We started with a pumpkin ginger soup that was amazing. I don't like pumpkin but am craving this soup a day later. It was creamy with the ginger bringing out the pumpkins sweet flavor. We also got the tuna tartare described below. It hasn't changed and was delicious.

For our mains we had a the veggie bento box and grilled sea bass with a miso sauce. The bento box contained what you would expect:6-7 pieces of nicely fried tempura, a veggie pring roll, veggie sushi, and a salad. The fish was perfectly grilled: nice crunchy char protecting soft, flaky, moist fish. It was a nice sized piece, enough to finish. The strings of sweet potato on top were unnecessary

All in all a pleasant surprise. The soups looked delicious so we will be back to try them out as the weather gets cold.

it is probably just me, and it was mobbed by 6:00 last night, but this place goes overboard. just looking at the plates, which are typically heaped with food, is daunting. i stopped ordering the seaweed salad because it was getting loaded up with too many extraneous ingredients, including lettuce, and was filling, which is not something i want from my seaweed. Reaching out in so many pan-asian directions, the food has a surprisingly wide focus, better attuned to teens and the family scene than sushi-ko. a tall yuzu shochu cocktail, with its salty undertone, and green tea sake are both refreshing starts for adults, gently inebriating if you keep them coming. translucent garden (summer) rolls provide mostly the pale flavor of rice vermicelli and taste of next to nothing without their sauces, the best (and properly essential) ingredients on a plate that, if it isn't shared, is too much to start a meal. i wasn't bowled over by the pumpkin soup, although it was good, with a ginger kick and seeds to help enliven a rich, sweet puree that doesn't hit too many high flavor notes. a tender beef tenderloin with delicious pomegranate sauce arrives with a heap of squash-colored baby potatoes, haricot vers, mushroom strips and spinach. urchin and bluefin come closest to sweeping you out to sea on a well-rounded fresh deluxe jo nigiri ($30) plate that inclues generous slices of amberjack, razor clam and salmon, among other pieces. service is everything you could ask for. meals are fast-paced and end with a tight squeeze out of packed tables. the restaurant is a swirl of light and color, without much constraint, although there are no helium balloons.

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it is probably just me, and it was mobbed by 6:00 last night, but this place goes overboard. just looking at the plates, which are typically heaped with food, is daunting. i stopped ordering the seaweed salad because it was getting loaded up with too many extraneous ingredients, including lettuce, and was filling, which is not something i want from my seaweed.

For what Bethesda has to offer, I like Raku, but I think your points align with my personal experiences. I was there last week, had their fish special, and thought to myself, "This is pretty decent, but it would be MUCH better if there was just less of everything." Servings were too big (especially the bed of an apparent risotto) and I remember thinking there were probably 2 extraneous ingredients (sorry, can't remember specifically). It's as if they're trying to please everyone, from the chain-hoppers to the adventurous eater, and that's hard to do, though they are always busy so they're doing right by a lot of people. IMHO, though it's not a great restaurant, it's good enough for local dining. I'll keep going, though we'll see what happens if the other Sushi Ko ever decides to open closer to us.

pax,

Brian

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It is, but apparently the Bethesda cuisine is better (only had the Dupont cuisine but didn't return due to service or lack thereof).

I should have written my sentence more carefully -- I meant to ask if the two Rakus are still owned by the same people. I thought I had heard a while ago that the two were no longer under the same ownership.

I ask because I have friends who won't go to Bethesda Raku because of the shabby treatment received at Dupont Raku.

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I should have written my sentence more carefully -- I meant to ask if the two Rakus are still owned by the same people. I thought I had heard a while ago that the two were no longer under the same ownership.

I ask because I have friends who won't go to Bethesda Raku because of the shabby treatment received at Dupont Raku.

as far as i know they have been in separate orbits for quite a few years. my mind is murky on this, but from what i recall: the dupont circle branch was started by the same people as red sage (mark miller), i believe, and the food was pre-prepared so that it could be cooked quickly in the kitchen, but things didn't get off to a very good start and its originators lost interest fairly quickly. the bethesda outpost at some point went off in a different direction with a new chef from sushi-ko.

mediocre or terrible restaurants can manage to hang on, or even prosper, for quite some time in the dupont circle area. look at kramer books, which is far from my favorite independent book store. there was one occasion when i felt like throwing a brick through the window and hoping it bounced off the head of the owner.

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any recent visits? I voted for Passage to India but the better half is interested in trying this place.

The wife and I visit Bethesda Raku every month or so. Haven't noticed any drop-off in food quality, and we've had better service as of late, which might be more due to the luck of which server we get than any overall improvement in management.

Items we've liked on recent visits:

- tuna tartare

- Grilled Maine Scallop with Wild Mushroom Ragout

- hamachi sashimi w/ponzu sauce

- Wasabi Dynamite Roll

- toro tartare (5 "rolls" wrapped in daikon instead of rice, w/spicy sauce and topped w/ assortment of caviar, salmon caviar and something else)

- ocean spring roll

- whatever sushi is on the specials that day

- mussells

- in summer, they have an excellent heirloom tomato salad

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My name is Marcel The. I am a partner at Raku. We have very high regards for the quality of this site, both in the way it's run/ moderated and quality of its members. Though I have often visited the site for the past 5 years, this is my first time ever posting. If anyone have any questions/ comments regarding our restaurants, I will be gladly respond on this forum. Mr. Rockwell, hats off on having an excellent site all these years; a well managed forum for all of us the industry and consumers.

Marcel The

Raku

Marcel,

Thanks very much for the kind words. Now that you've outed yourself, would you mind offering up some advice on Raku? Many people aren't quite sure what the restaurants are all about, or even if they're under the same ownership. I'd love to know several things that you recommend there, and I suspect others would too. (I know it's always a restaurateur's first instinct to say "everything is good, or else we wouldn't have it," but I thought I'd at least ask - it's been quite awhile since I've been to either Raku, and some guidance would be much appreciated.)

Cheers,

Rocks

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Marcel,

Thanks very much for the kind words. Now that you've outed yourself, would you mind offering up some advice on Raku? Many people aren't quite sure what the restaurants are all about, or even if they're under the same ownership. I'd love to know several things that you recommend there, and I suspect others would too. (I know it's always a restaurateur's first instinct to say "everything is good, or else we wouldn't have it," but I thought I'd at least ask - it's been quite awhile since I've been to either Raku, and some guidance would be much appreciated.)

Cheers,

Rocks

Sure! The two locations were not run by the same management for a very long time. But they are now. We have slowly/ gradually changed much of the menu items so they are the same as Bethesda location. We would like to do away from stir fry eventually, but too many people are still favoring that now. There are still much to be done at DC location. To accomodate these changes (menu and atmosphere wise) some major renovation to the kitchen, sushi bar, dining room is needed. We are hoping to do this in the winter months. I can go into more details with you if you want (maybe via email or phone is better).

We generally recommend customers to focus more on our sushi, appetizers, salads, entrees, and also what is on the special paper as opposed to noodles/ stir fry.

Our executive chef, Masaru Homma, is very particular about quality of ingredients that he uses. Much of our fish come from Japan.

As far as service, we have made much changes in our seating policies in DC since we took over. We now accept reservations for both locations. Bethesda has just undergone a major facelift and looking much nicer and fresher.

But I'm continuing to make changes to improve, I will never stop. There is always things to improve. If anyone has any concerns or issues that they would like to bring up, I am always available to our customers anytime. I would love to hear from you.

I will stop here and perhaps continue more later with response to any specific questions or comments later.

Thank you Mr. Rockwell for the opportunity. I hope I have answered some of your questions but if not I'm always available to you.

Mthe@rakuasiandining.com

301.213.1652

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Finding Mussel bar closed, we ventured into Rake at 9:55 or so last night. Were told that the kitchen closed at 10pm but we were welcome to dine if we could get our orders in right away. No Problem.

Kay really liked the Asian heirloom tomato Caprese but I thought the topping overwhelmed the tomatoes a tiny bit. I loved the inerplay between the shisho and the tomatoes plus the nice coarse salt.

The spicy gazpacho was oddly sweet and had only a tiny bit of shopped veggies.

Better was the unagi nigiri which was quite good and the Madai Red Snapper was very nice.

We also had the mussels which did not wow. The broth was nice but they were served with fluffy baguette that night have come from Giant.

Their Sake list is superb and drinking a nice sized carafe {tokkurri} of Bishonen on the sidewalk on a beautiful night made our trip to Roku pleasant.

$46 was pretty gentle on the wallet as well.

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We have not been here in quite some time but stopped by on a Saturday night in the Bethesda location. I cannot understand how this place does well. No where close to what it was when Mark Miller first opened the D.C. location in the mid-90's. Everything we had was awful. I felt like I was Gordon Ramsey eating for the first time in one of his restaurants in Kitchen Nightmares except for the place was packed.

Calamari was tough and tasted frozen.

Ocean roll, which is supposed to be a seafood spring roll had no seafood in it, had been fried well past its prime and was filled with whole and slimy shiitake mushrooms.

Miso Sea Bass had no hint of Miso and was swimming in a eerily orange glowing sauce that the waitress described as a tomato ginger sauce (no hint of ginger either).

The only good think about the place was that the customer service was good. We complained about each of the items we were served and were not charged for some of them.

Needless to say, we will not be back.

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I have lived near the Dupont branch for a long time -- 9 years. Until recently, it was not good. The sushi was barely edible. The service was terrible. The fusion plates were passable, but barely. All that changed at some point in the last 2-4 years (I can't put a finger on when because I rarely went when it was bad). I tried Raku again last year and it was so much better. Service has improved dramatically. All the food is better. Is it "great" Asian food? No, not a chance. It is still just okay. But the sushi is good enough. The pad thai and Asian dishes generally are pleasing. It's a great neighborhood restaurant. I'd never go out of my way to eat there, but as a Dupont local, I love it. Great location, great outdoor space, great menu. Over the last year or so, I've been about once a week and will continue to do so unless quality gets worse for some reason.

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We have not been here in quite some time but stopped by on a Saturday night in the Bethesda location. I cannot understand how this place does well. No where close to what it was when Mark Miller first opened the D.C. location in the mid-90's. Everything we had was awful. I felt like I was Gordon Ramsey eating for the first time in one of his restaurants in Kitchen Nightmares except for the place was packed.

Calamari was tough and tasted frozen.

Ocean roll, which is supposed to be a seafood spring roll had no seafood in it, had been fried well past its prime and was filled with whole and slimy shiitake mushrooms.

Miso Sea Bass had no hint of Miso and was swimming in a eerily orange glowing sauce that the waitress described as a tomato ginger sauce (no hint of ginger either).

The only good think about the place was that the customer service was good. We complained about each of the items we were served and were not charged for some of them.

Needless to say, we will not be back.

To compare Raku in Bethesda to Kitchen Nightmares is ridiculous beyond words. You may have had a poor experience -- I'm not doubting that at all here -- but Raku is always busy and generally gets favorable reviews here and elsewhere for a reason. KN showcases horrid restaurants where the food and service are awful. The food at Raku is good to very good for a reasonable price. You didn't mention in your post any of the dishes I or my wife have come to order regularly (see my post above).

I have had the ocean roll and it tends to be too greasy but it always had seafood in it. Not among the best items on the menu IMHO.

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We have not been here in quite some time but stopped by on a Saturday night in the Bethesda location. I cannot understand how this place does well. No where close to what it was when Mark Miller first opened the D.C. location in the mid-90's. Everything we had was awful. I felt like I was Gordon Ramsey eating for the first time in one of his restaurants in Kitchen Nightmares except for the place was packed.

Calamari was tough and tasted frozen.

Ocean roll, which is supposed to be a seafood spring roll had no seafood in it, had been fried well past its prime and was filled with whole and slimy shiitake mushrooms.

Miso Sea Bass had no hint of Miso and was swimming in a eerily orange glowing sauce that the waitress described as a tomato ginger sauce (no hint of ginger either).

The only good think about the place was that the customer service was good. We complained about each of the items we were served and were not charged for some of them.

Needless to say, we will not be back.

I'm sorry you were unhappy with our food. If you would like to call me at 301.213.1652, I will be more than happy discuss it with you further and rectify it for you.

Marcel The

Raku

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Mr P, working from home today, suggested we bop into Bethesda so he could go to the Apple store, and that we "get a quick bite somewhere" for lunch. So of course I thought of Raku, what with recent activity on this thread and it being around the corner from the Apple dealerstore, along with not having eaten at Raku in ages.

So anyway, I was tickled to see that my old favorite, Tokyo dashi broth, is still on the menu, but I ordered the coconut red curry with udon, vegetables, and tofu. And it was every bit as good as I remembered. Which is to say, tasty and satisfying, well prepared, nothing innovative or extraordinary. Just really good.

Mr P got a special of Japanese style chicken cutlet in curry, which was a panko-coated (I think) breast, sliced, on a bed of short grain rice next to a pool of curry sauce. I don't know from Japanese curry, but it tasted delicious, if not as complex as Indian curries tend to be, and the chicken and rice were each perfectly cooked.

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Wow--no posts in over a year. We had dinner here this week and have many times in recent years. So thought I'd post.

I'm on record, as are many others here on dr.com, as feeling that the Bethesda Row area is a sea of restaurant mediocrity or worse. But, it's not totally fair to say that as there are a few spots that do stand out, including Cava, Penang, the burger at Newton's table, Quartermaine, Shanghai Palace (especially the whole duck) and Raku. Better to say that the ratio of good places to 'overpriced-mediocre-or-terrible-spots-that-always-amaze-me-when-ful'l is lower around the Row than North Bethesda and many other areas.

Anyway, Raku.

We tend to go here maybe once every few months and generally enjoy it. It's always crowded and we seem to always spend at least $70 for two without drinks but I think that's as much about my tendency to order multiple courses and the better grades of fish than any overpricing.

This week, we (2 of us) had several things we often get:

- Sashimi portion of yellowtail ($9.50): three pieces of good quality and nicely portioned fish.

- Miso soup ($2.50): real miso with plenty of tasty fresh seaweed. A very good version.

- Seaweed salad ($4.50): this comes with a few dishes and we sometimes get it as a side. Again, a nice version.

- Deluxe bento box ($36): yes, more expensive but this is a lot of food I wouldn't advise ordering for most people with normal appetites. It includes 4 or 5 slices of nice tenderloin, a green salad with some seaweed salad, 5 or 6 pieces of very nice hot and crispy tempura including two prawn, 4 or 5 pieces of very good sashimi including salmon, tuna, flounder and yellowtail, and a small (maybe 3 or 4oz) portion of rich, buttery sea bass. A great choice if you're especially hungry and in the mood for a number of different things Raku does well.

- Whole branzino ($22): my +1 really enjoyed this. A generously sized and nicely seasoned fish perfectly cooked and totally worth the money.

- Green tea ($3): a Great Deal and let me tell you why. Palena, one of my favorite places, annoys me with tea. They serve it in a pot the same size or even a bit smaller than the cup. So, you can't refill anything with it. Here, Raku is using a quality looseleaf green and serving it in a large tetsubin iron teapot that keeps the tea hot a long time and allows for at least 5 or 6 refills. I really appreciate this; something so simple.

You can dine at Raku Bethesda much less expensively than what we sometimes spend with various combinations, very nice udon soups and other options. We also like to eat outside on their patio in nice weather, where they allow well-behaved dogs.

Not sure about the Dupont location. It was really bad years ago but haven't been in a long time and, from the thread above, sounds like I need to revisit.

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Wow--no posts in over a year.

I still really like this place for the noodle soups, but then I'm nuts for noodle soups of any type. Recently MrP got us carryout, and I have to say I love the way Raku packages things: the noodles are in one container, with all the veg/tofu/meat on top, and the broth in another. This lets you reheat the broth without overcooking everything else, and even save some for lunch the next day without much loss of quality. I don't believe the curry or dashi have changed significantly since I first posted on this thread five years ago, and that's a good thing.

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On 3/8/2015 at 2:57 PM, mr food said:

I read this and if he listed Persimmon as one of the best, I'm not sure he knows what good food is. A recent meal there was quite unmemorable. Service WAS good though. We're going to Raku Tuesday for the first time. Any recent visits?

Maybe 6 months ago. Not really memorable but ok. Better than the DuPont location. Lots of other Asian, sushi spots around town with similar pricing that are better.

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On 1/12/2016 at 4:00 PM, cheezepowder said:

PoPville reports that Raku in Dupont Circle is rebranding as Rakuya.  Raku's website says the location is under renovation until Winter 2015.  PoPville also mentions that Raku opened a location in Cathedral Heights (3312 Wisconsin Ave, NW).

Just when I think I've seen every mathematical permutation, now there's this one. This thread will remain "Raku" for Bethesda and Cleveland Heights, and a new thread for Rakuya will be opened for the rebranding of the Dupont location; had there not been multiple locations, this same thread would have been used for Rakuya.

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On ‎11‎/‎8‎/‎2017 at 10:33 PM, sheldman said:

Cathedral Commons Raku.  Seems successful.  Sadly, not good.   Just dull flavors in the agedashi tofu and in udon bowl.   Dull, dull, dull.  Tried to convince myself it was subtle.  No, just dull.  But making $$$ apparently.  Yay,

Completely disagree. Raku-Cathedral Commons has become one of our go to places. I've eaten here for lunch and dinner dozens of times in the past year plus and always found everything to be rather tasty. I actually think they do one of the best and more creative  agedashi tofus in town the way they not only include the usual cubes of tofu and good dashi sauce but also add a variety of vegetables like kabocha squash and shishito pepper. I really love this dish and I regularly ask them to give me a spoon so I can finish off any remaining sauce in the bottom like soup. The udon and other bowls in the Tokyo dashi sauce are very flavorful. I can't speak to the coconut curry sauce as I've never tried that but my wife typically gets the udon dashi bowl everytime we go. I also think they have some really good sushi - especially if you order nigiri from their specials menu on the paper inside the menu. For regular rolls on the menu, I like the grilled salmon harasu and the vegetable futomaki for something different than the standard stuff which is also pretty good. They also have really good bento boxes (many offered at lunch vs. only 2 at dinner). I especially like the veggie bento box.  They also offer an off-menu kid's chicken teriyaki which my kids are a fan of. Even the basics like their steamed rice is good quality. I have found a few duds on the menu but overall we are very pleased. They have a nice cocktail menu too. The servers are also very friendly and helpful.  

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9 hours ago, KeithA said:

I can't speak to the coconut curry sauce as I've never tried that but my wife typically gets the udon dashi bowl everytime we go. 

I used to frequent Bethesda often, but I haven't been in a while.  If the coconut curry is the same, I would suggest you give it a try as it is VERY tasty.

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On 11/8/2017 at 10:33 PM, sheldman said:

Cathedral Commons Raku.  Seems successful.  Sadly, not good.   Just dull flavors in the agedashi tofu and in udon bowl.   Dull, dull, dull.  Tried to convince myself it was subtle.  No, just dull.  But making $$$ apparently.  Yay,

On 11/10/2017 at 12:15 AM, KeithA said:

Completely disagree. Raku-Cathedral Commons has become one of our go to places.

Major-league disconnect: Both sheldman and KeithA are two diners for whom I have immense respect, and both of whose opinions I take very seriously. 

Someone please explain. Please explain ... please explain ... please explain ...

Cheers,
Robbie the Robot

(Star of "Forbidden Planet")

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I think I was more annoyed, than anything. Annoyed at the fact that, in a menu that seems large and varied, there was barely anything that called to me. Filling up on sushi (rolls or nigiri) looked like it would entail a choice between "pedestrian and pretty expensive" and "very expensive."  Things designated as "entrees" read to me, for the most part, like "slab of protein from huge wholesaler, raised to the highest price the market will bear."  It felt to me like the epitome of what bugs me about NW DC, west of Rock Creek: expensive food, neither comforting nor interesting nor good-ingredient-focused.

And there are few things that I love more than leftover food of any Asian cuisine, eaten cold for breakfast. From the crappiest delivery Chinese to the fanciest, give it to me cold for breakfast. But that leftover udon in broth has been sitting in my refrigerator looking at me ever since, and I just can't bring myself to do it. It felt like dishwater with bok choy.

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