Ask almost anybody around the Little Rock area where to find the best sushi, and the answer will most likely be Sushi Cafe in the Heights. The Kavanaugh restaurant matches a stylish interior with a focus on fresh ingredients that has made it a regular winner of the various popular choice awards in Central Arkansas. As for me, Sushi Cafe has never been my favorite spot for sushi, and I've never felt that their cuisine quite lived up to the constant hype. In addition, service at the place can be hit-or-miss; it is, after all, a restaurant that takes itself very seriously in a part of town that tends to do the same. But all that's not to say that there's nothing worth eating at Sushi Cafe — there's one dish that makes the restaurant a don't-miss, and surprisingly enough, it's not sushi.
The dish in question is the Grilled Ahi Tuna, a perfectly cooked piece of fish served with grilled asparagus and Sushi Cafe's passable fried rice. The sashimi-grade tuna is grilled to perfection, lightly seared on the outside with a cool, chewy center and served with a creamy strawberry yogurt dipping sauce that goes well with the tuna despite the seemingly odd combination of flavors. Of all the fish out there, good tuna is one of my greatest loves, and this small piece of fresh, buttery-textured fish is one of the best examples of a well-cooked piece of fish I've ever found. The asparagus served to the side is slightly crunchy, with the bittersweet flavor of the vegetable enhanced nicely by the smoky flavor of the grill. The portions here aren't large, so big eaters might be better served going for one of Sushi Cafe's sushi combos or the bento box, but for a light lunch, this tuna is hard to beat.
Sushi Cafe is located at 5823 Kavanaugh Boulevard in Little Rock. They are open for lunch Monday - Friday 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. with dinner service starting at 5 p.m. every night of the week.