Stingray Sushi Dining Review
Surprisingly the weather was turbulent that day, but I was still willing to walk the plank and dive into one of Scottsdale’s unique sushi eateries — Stingray Sushi. But only the most clever of patrons will learn the way of the Ray; first, you have to figure out how to get in — literally.
Once I scoured, hunted and navigated my way into the restaurant — after a moment of confusion upon realizing the door has been camouflaged with the wall — I sank into my seat, eagerly awaiting the arrival of my dinner mates so we could give our first command.
Stingray Sushi’s unique décor kept my eyes wandering. The restaurant’s interior conjured images of an urban, contemporary vessel, with what looked like wooden planks floating high above the tables. But this ship was sailing on funky seas with its brightly-colored, orange seats; the swelling techno music; and fish eggs that not only served as a good source of carbs sprinkled over my wild salmon roll, but as inspiration for the light fixture located at the entrance of the restaurant.
As any sushi aficionado would start the evening, my dinner mates and I snacked on edamame; gyoza, pan-seared pork dumplings; and lobster tempura, lightly battered, deep-fried, bite-size bits of lobster, with a golden, crispy exterior, a hint of citrus in flavor and a creamy texture.
As we eagerly awaited the arrival of our first entree, we realized only at Stingray Sushi do wooden boats fare well on land, too — on your table that is, and at a fraction of the size, of course. The medium-sized sushi boat presented — in a fun, unique way — an assortment of fresh fish chosen by the chef, including salmon and tuna; a spicy tuna roll, which had fresh, light vegetables, followed by a hot kick; and sides of miso soup and a bowl of white rice, per patron.
Shortly after, our caterpillar roll, stingray roll and wild salmon roll surfaced. The caterpillar roll was topped with avocado slices, drizzled with eel sauce and stuffed with unagi, or freshwater eel, and cucumber. Not a fan of eel, I was surprised this became my favorite dish of the night. A majority of my dinner mates agreed.
It was now time to jump ship and try the wild salmon roll, comprised of crunchy salmon with a spicy bite, cucumbers and topped with orange-colored tobiko, which is Japanese for flying fish roe. I surprised myself many times that night, as I swore I would never eat tobiko, but once I took that unthinkable leap, my reservations for it vanished.
The Stringray Roll was a must to order. It combined an interesting mix of elements, including spicy crab and cucumber, with spicy rurkake, cilantro and a jalapeno mix, with a sweet, chili sauce on the side. It was safe to say this was the hottest roll on the table, but the addition of jalapenos worked quite well to create an unforgettable taste.
Hold the table steady; the Godzilla Roll has finally made its presence known, and what a beast that was — both in size and in the utter amount of food, including shrimp tempura, spicy tuna, cucumber, soft shell crab and a crab mix, and eel. The Godzilla was hard to miss, presented in an eye-catching display; it was rolled and wrapped with avocado-green soy paper and swimming in eel sauce.
To round out our feast, we split the chocolate cake and mochi ice cream, a Japanese confection of strawberry, vanilla and orange-flavored ice cream, each wrapped in mochi, a chewy, pounded sticky rice, and sprinkled with a white powdery coating.
Steer your way to Stingray Sushi and indulge yourself with a feast of fine Japanese cuisine in a casual, cool environment.