Café du Japon is Daytona’s Newest Sushi Cafe and Bar located on Seabreeze Blvd in Daytona Beach. It is anything but your average sushi place. From the outside you can hardly see into the restaurant. When you walk in the place is pretty dark with a disco ball spinning overhead. It appears they’re shooting for a romantic atmosphere but in reality it might qualify as the equivalent of a nerdy 13 year old’s attempt at wooing the “hot girl”. It’s something Napoleon Dynamite might come up with but with much better food. Once you get past the bizarre appearance of the place the food is visually fantastic and also fairly good.
306 Seabreeze Blvd.
Daytona Beach, FL 32118
Telephone: +1 386-262-2676
Food: We started off with some edamame($2.75)-boiled soy beans with sea salt. These were your basic edamame. Simply salted. They were okay but nothing special. The portion size was fairly small. We ordered the chicken teriyaki ($9.50) which came with choice of miso or onion soup, salad and some broccoli with a sauce similar to shrimp sauce on it. I attempted to order the salad with ranch dressing and was told they only offered ginger dressing but “it’s really good ginger dressing”. I’m not normally a huge fan of ginger dressing and I was definitely not a fan of this one. The chicken and vegetables tasted good. They use a very thin teriyaki sauce that’s probably closer to what you would expect a soy sauce to taste like than a teriyaki. If you’re wanting thick gooey teriyaki sauce you’ll be disappointed. Next we dove into the sushi rolls. As you can see from the pictures at Cafe du Japon they definitely shoot for the “food as art” theme. Each roll came out beautifully prepared and very pleasing to the eye. First, we tried the pink samurai roll- shrimp tempura, krab, avocado, smoked salmon on top.
This one was our favorite of the rolls we tried. It had a great blend of flavors and like every other roll we had the sauces were delicious. Next, we tried the avocado and scallops roll- deep fried scallop with cream cheese wrapped in seaweed with rice on the outside topped with avocado. This was a good simple roll. It was exactly what you’d expect from the description. Next, we tried the Jalapeño tempura roll- jalapeño, shrimp tempura, avocado, and cucumber with seaweed on the outside. This one was just too spicy to eat. It came with huge pieces of jalapeño you could see in it. You’ll probably love it if you like dishes that set your mouth on fire. My dining companion on this occasion enjoys spicy food and just couldn’t take it. The last roll we tried was the Oh My God roll-Shrimp tempura, avocado, asparagus, krab, little pieces of scallops on top, special sauce. The waiter told us this was the most popular roll they have. It was very cool looking and it tasted okay. It was a bit too crunchy and heavy for my taste. However, it may just be my personal preference that leads me not to love it.
Service: When we walked in it was 6pm on a Friday and there was only one couple in the restaurant. Our server was pretty young and clearly inexperienced. We asked what he liked on the menu and he told us he was new and hadn’t tried anything. I can’t imagine not having a new server at least try a few of your popular dishes in a place that serves pretty unique sushi. The service was fairly inept. By the time we finished there might have been 6 or 7 people in the restaurant. There’s no excuse for poor service in an empty restaurant. They really need better training for their servers.
If you’re in Daytona beach you really should check this place out. In this true hole in the wall you’ll see some of the coolest looking sushi rolls anywhere. You’ll surely have a unique experience.
- Visually Fantastic sushi
- Don’t miss the pink samurai roll
- A unique experience
- Servers lack knowledge of the menu
- Generally poor service