Hello Maki and Sushi opened its second location on Inya Road six months ago in what is quickly becoming a trendy, albeit still short and traffic snarled, stretch in Yangon.
Along with Hello Maki and Sushi there is a gourmet ice cream shop and revitalised colonial hotel; there is no overpriced cupcake boutique, as of yet.
Hello Maki and Sushi offers a large menu that includes the expected: sushi and sashimi, as well as an extensive range of tempura, noodles and grilled items.
I started with the sashimi moriawase (K7000) that included tuna, salmon, crab stick, squid, octopus, sea bass and mackerel.
The stifling cab ride to the restaurant gave me doubts about just how fresh any of the city’s sashimi could be, but salmon, tuna, edamame, sake (Japanese rice wine) and other key ingredients are shipped in regularly from Japan and Norway.
The nigiri mix (K5200) used similar fish as the sashimi, but also included a California roll, tamago (Japanese omelet) and shrimp nigiri.
The California hand roll (K1200) is actually three ice-cream-cone-sized rolls that are a great value for a quick lunch.
Tonkatsu (fried pork, K2800) and saba shiroyaki (broiled mackerel, K2600) are both nice alternatives for those who might think raw fish is best used as bait while angling in the Ayeyarwaddy. The pork was crispy without being oily. The mackerel was not overly fishy.
The fantastic service is highlighted by manager U Sithu Maung whose six years spent working at Dubai’s upscale hotels is evident in his attention to detail and the needs of his customers, many of whom he greets by name.
For group dining the private room is a great option. Like the entire restaurant it has a simple, minimalist appeal.
For the month of November Hello Maki and Sushi will be offering 25 percent off food. An additional discount will soon be rolled out for international school students.