Takara Sushi Rolls Out the Red Carpet

Disclaimer: I was invited to a Tasting Tweetup through a Tampa Bay Bloggers and Takara Sushi and Sake Lounge partnership.  I received gift cards as compensation.  The opinions shared are my own.

I love sushi.  I can throw down some rolls like nobody’s business.

Takara Sushi and Sake Lounge rolled out the red dragon red carpet for the Tampa Bay Bloggers when they invited us to sample their newest Date Night Menu.

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I don’t think Takara realized what a bottomless pit I am when it comes to sushi and may have regretted inviting me to this Tasting Tweetup once they saw how much I can devour…and drink.

saketini

Since I’m already a fan of Takara, they didn’t need to serve me of gallons of sake to win me over, but a Lychee Saketini paired nicely with the sushi and it was the perfect holiday drink for this date night occasion.

saketini

Before this evening, I had never tried sake. To my surprise TY KU Sake is very smooth and similar to a fine vodka.  With a 15% alcohol, it is a drink meant for sipping much like a fortified wine.  Best served cold, the Silver and Black TY KU Sake offer a rich flavor.  I preferred the Silver and Black over the Coconut Sake, but it didn’t stop me from drinking this tasty cocktail.

coconut sake

TYKU sake

Though the sake was surprisingly delicious, the presentation of the sushi platters stole the show.  With each platter, Takara successfully demonstrated that the art of sushi should be as beautiful, colorful and vibrant as the flavors.

For starters, we sampled some typical Asian appetizers such as Crab Rangoon and Pork Pot Stickers.

pot stickers

crab rangoon

However, the Sushi Tacos painted the scene for appetizers definitely outside the Bento box.

Takara recently added more vegetarian options to its menu and shared its Veggie Hand Rolls and Tempura Vegetables, with battered and deep fried asparagus, sweet potatoes, carrots and mushrooms.

Veggie Rolls

Vegetable Tempura

Following the tacos and tempura, the unique presentation of the Dynamite Mussels and Crab Cakes provided a sneak peek into all the new tasty delights Takara has to offer, but the Ceviche served with cilantro and lime juice were my favorite.

Ceviche

mussels

Crab Cake Photo Courtesy of Takara

All these beautiful flavors and colors and we hadn’t even tasted all the sushi yet!

As I previously mentioned, I am already a huge fan of Takara but this sampling provided an opportunity to taste some sushi rolls and sashimi that I may not typically try, such as the Green Lantern, Red Dragon or the Tempura Bagel Roll.  All were equally delicious.

sushi

Red Dragon photo courtesy of Takara.

Sushi

sushi rolls

sushi rolls

sashimi

But let your taste buds be the judge.  For the new year, Takara is open 7 days a week with longer hours and so many great specials to offer.

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To tempt your taste buds a bit more, enter to win this Takara giveaway. One lucky Run DMT reader will win a $25 gift certificate to sample some of the best sushi in Tampa Bay.  Giveaway ends Sunday, 1/12/14 at 11:59 pm EST.

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