By Dan I Cook
Being older has its perks. I’ve watched the evolution of sushi in Broward County since it was first introduced here.
I went to the first real sushi bar in the 1980s called Nobi’s, located near Oakland Park Boulevard and Federal Highway. This was authentic Japanese sushi, and I remember it was difficult for me to accept that we were eating raw fish.
My father, who is Samoan, couldn’t get enough of the stuff.
I would go with my pop after golfing and watch him eat. I don’t remember what I ordered, but it wasn’t sushi. I remember my dad and his friends would say it’s all about the fish and its quality. Never would they have envisioned a place like Phat Boy Sushi and Kitchen. This is where the quality of the fish is matched with unique ingredients, and an artist’s flair produces a taste for the senses.
The menu is outstanding, with a decent range of Asian dishes. Ramen gets served in a nice big bowl with the steam filtering thru the air. Every bowl is Instagram-worthy.
One of Phat Boy most popular ramen dishes is Spicy Seafood Ramen. It’s described as “ Egg Noodles, Squid, Scallops & Shrimp in Spicy Soy Broth.” This dish is damn delicious. I’m slurping here, slurping there, I’m slurping everywhere! It’s a slurp fest, baby. And yes, it’s polite in Asian culture to slurp your noodles, folks.
The broth is salty and spicy, with a good portion of seafood/noodles with every slurp. To me, it wasn’t very spicy, so don’t let that scare you away. If I get the flu, I’m ditching the chicken noodle soup and buying this stuff. I can see and taste why this is a popular dish.
Shumai is 4-pieces steamed jumbo shrimp dumplings. I like this appetizer because of the dipping sauce. The shumai itself is pretty standard, but the sauce completes the bite with an excellent salty/savory taste.
Cali Roll is Kani (fake crab), cucumber, avocado inside out with sesame seeds.
Now here is the kicker, for an additional charge of $3.50, you can substitute the fake crab with King Crab. Now any sushi snob is probably saying, you eat California Rolls?! Why yes, I do, along with sea urchin gonads.
When you add King Crab, it takes this roll to a whole new level, which is why I like to call it ‘The Deadliest Catch Roll.’ The King Crab brings an excellent sweet favor only real crab can. Simply delicious.
Surf and Turf Roll is Tempura Lobster, Cucumber, Cilantro, Topped with Seared Ribeye and Spicy House Sauce.
The combinations in this roll blow my mind. Cilantro and cooked ribeye?
First off, they torch/sear the ribeye right on top of the roll. That is cool to watch. The addition of cilantro changes the game since it is a strong herb to use. Either you love the stuff, or you hate it. I highly recommend this roll, but it’s not cheap.
The Happiest of Happy Hours
Folks who have followed me all these years know I’m all about the Happy Hours.
Like any normal person, I want a deal. If you own a restaurant in Coral Springs and have a happy hour with bar bites, I’ve probably been there.
Phat Boy has one of the best happy hours out west. It’s seven days a week from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. They offer discounted cocktails, beers, and a special food menu.
They recently built a full sit-down bar which is pretty popular. If you’re lucky, you may have Kittie or Neville as your bartenders. They have great personalities, provide excellent service, and can make a mean drink.
Which reminds me: get the Lychee Martini. This libation is excellent. You would believe it was a very sweet drink, but it isn’t. The bonus is the lychees they add to the glass. The fruit absorbs all the alcohol goodness and eating them once your drink is finished, a real treat.
It would be cool to see if they started an I.T.B (in the biz) night, giving the restaurant employees who get off late a place to chill, eat, drink, and let some steam off.
My Happy Hour Bar Bite Menu recommendations are the Salmon Sushi Trio and the Tuna TarTar Wonton.
The salmon is lightly scored on top and finished off with a nice torching. It has a pleasant, sweet, and smooth taste. The tuna is served on fried wontons — a tuna poke’ served like a nacho. I love this bite because it’s nearly perfect. You have the crunch of the fried wonton, the softness of the tuna, the nuttiness of the sesame oil, the saltiness of the soy sauce, sweetness from the eel sauce, and just a kiss of heat from the spicy mayo.
As I said, it’s a near-perfect umami bite.
This place is mega hip and chill with Asian murals and decor for a zen feeling. The open kitchen gives the space an industrial hum and the overhead garage doors—perfect Ying and Yang effect. The restaurant is immaculate with outdoor seating if that is more your speed.
As for service, I’ve never had any issues. Service has always been prompt/professional, but let’s be honest, they know me, and I know them.
The managers’ Melissa, Sunny, and any servers always take great care of me, and I’m very appreciative to all of them. I’ve even met the owner John a few times, and he is a class act.
I can see this concept of Asian fusion becoming very popular in Coral Springs. Mixtures of Korean, Japanese, Chinese combined with a banging Happy Hour, chill decor, and killer service are a fantastic recipe for success.
Is this the best sushi around?
Nope. But it’s growing on me.
Remember, there is more to Phat Boy than sushi, which in my mind, makes it excel. If you are a novice with sushi, this is a great place to get started.
Order a Lychee Martini, a Deadliest Catch Roll (aka California Roll sub-King Crab), or a Surf and Turf Roll and start your journey to a world of deliciousness. If you are a sushi or ramen professional, it would be great to hear your opinion of this joint.
As for me, I rate this 4 Beers. Please tell John, Melissa, Sunny, Neville, and Kittie that Dan I. Cook and CoralSpringsTalk.com sent you. Stay Hungry!
Four beers = Outstanding
Three beers = Good
Two beers = OK
One beer = Needs work
Zero beers= Sucks (No beer is never a good thing).
Phat Boy Sushi & Kitchen
2702 N University Drive
Coral Springs, FL 33065
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