The Red Fin – Hotel Max, Seattle, WA

The Red Fin (Hotel Max)
620 Stewart St
Seattle, WA 98101-1212

After living in Japan and then having the unfortunate experience of having to come home, I’ve always been on the lookout for good Japanese food. The key part of that statement isn’t the “good” it is the “Japanese.” I go to places like AI Fusion, Ukai, Benihana, etc and call shenanigans. The food is good, but it isn’t Japanese.

When I got to this hotel, despite having been awake for roughly 38 hours, I was overjoyed that this hotel had a sushi bar/restaurant. A quick glance at a menu (and lack of a bunch of Chinese people doing tricks for dumb people and their dumb kids) alerted me to the fact that I would probably get some good Japanese-ish food. I was right. It was Japanese-ish, but that is to be expected as this place was indeed in America (so things like California rolls were on the menu *shakes fist*). That doesn’t mean that people ordered them, or that the chefs enjoyed making them.

I can’t remember what all was on the menu, but I remember what I had over my few days there. One big one that I never find was takoyaki. They had takoyaki. Seriously. And it wasn’t weird and rubbery like it is when you nuke it. It is still a good long walk in the sun away from the takoyaki in Osaka, but that walk isn’t a 13 hour flight, so I can let it go.
I also had various sashimi and some udon, both as good as I wanted them to be!

They also have a pretty diverse sake menu, which I was (regretfully) unable to try as I was on shift for the entire 3 days.

Being a sushi bar in downtown Seattle the clientele were awful. The hipsters were thankfully kept out by The Red Fin’s high prices, but I still had to sit among some seriously metrosexual douchebags who were impressing the evening’s conquest with their worldly culture by ordering sushi from the English menu. The worst part? It was working.

Anyway, people aside, the food was great, and a welcomed break from any “Japanese” restaurant that has fried rice. Thankfully, my meals were comp, otherwise I don’t think I would have eaten there more than once, or ordered as much as I did despite really really wanting to.


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