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Nama, Chef Handry Tjan's Sushi in the Former Calle Cinco, Conosci, and Kushi Space in City Vista, a Michael Schlow Restaurant

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After a brief stint as the Spanish tapas restaurant Calle Cinco, Conosci is now the neighborhood sushi restaurant Nama. The head chef, Handry Tjan, comes from Sushiko and Kobo. 

@MichaelBDC and I went and sat at the sushi counter on Thursday, their second day of service. Both Michael Schlow and Ed Scarpone (head of the Schlow Restaurant Group) were there to run quality control. We ordered the chef's selection of sushi & sashimi ($42 for 13 pieces), the tuna and jalapeno roll, octopus nigiri, and uni nigiri. There was a bit of a mixup as we assumed that the chef's selection was omakase (it was not) and that we had ordered one for each of us. We mentioned this to our sever and our comment was overheard by the chef and the two sous chefs in front of us so the chef sent out chu toro nigiri and a special nigiri of sweet shrimp topped with uni. After talking a bit with Michael Schlow, he sent out two orders of the beet nigiri for us as well.

The fish we had was outstanding, and in my opinion, on par with O-Ku and Sushi Ogawa. We don't usually order shrimp due to @MichaelBDC's mild shellfish allergy, but the shrimp was sweet and some of the best I have had. Even the beet nigiri was great and is highly recommended. The only area where Nama falls short for now is the selection of fish, which is fairly limited and standard. There is not as much variety as Ogawa or even Sushi Capitol, but the fish they did have was very very good. Both Michael Schlow and Chef Tjan mentioned that Nama is intended to be a neighborhood sushi restaurant and that they were keeping things simple to start. Depending on the neighborhood and clientele, could add more variety fish and omakase to the menu. We'll certainly be back and crossing our fingers that this place is here to stay.

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Stopped by Friday evening to get a sushi fix. Probably our fourth time at Nama. The place was bustling and every seat was filled with a couple waiting to take our bar seats when we left. @MichaelBDC and I sat at the bar and had some pretty good fish, but a step down from our first visit as we can't say that the fish was on par with Ogawa. Looking back, neither us feel like any bite we had that night was amazing, though we still continue to enjoy the vegetarian nigiri. Service was slow and a bit chaotic as there was only one server for the whole place. Also want to note that Chef Handry Tjan was not behind the counter and our brief conversation with one of the chefs lead us to believe he is no longer at Nama. At this point, we will probably go to Sushi Capitol ahead of Nama, but still happy to have a quality sushi option in the neighborhood. 

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