Tamari 8/13/10

by Rodzilla on August 20, 2010 · 2 comments


I decided to make my first review a positive one. Tamari is fast becoming one of my favorite restaurants in Pittsburgh. Chef Roger Li has developed an outstanding menu of Asian and Latin fusion. The following highlights one of my most recent visits.

To start my dining companion chose the house salad. The salad had a great mix of field greens, sliced jicama, tomatoes, ginger dressing, and the highlight: tempura bacon. The dressing itself was delicious and applied in the perfect amount, allowing the flavor to stay light even with a component as heavy as fried bacon.

House Salad: tomato tempura bacon ginger dressing

I started with the tiradito, and an order of the tuna nigiri. The tiradito is fluke sashimi with a spicy aji amarillo sauce topped with mixed greens.  The thin slices of fluke were cut well and incredibly fresh, but I felt they were overwhelmed by the aji amarillo. I also just wasn’t a fan of the flavors.

Tiradito: fluke aji amarillo mixed greens

The maguro nigiri was perfect. Though Tamari is a fusioin restuarant; they have some of the best sushi in Pittsburgh. The fish is always fresh, the cuts are generous, and the sushi rice is made and sized properly. One of my biggest pet peeves is huge globs of barely glutinous rice trying to pass itself as sushi, luckily on all my visits to Tamari the consistency, flavor, and size of the rice have always been perfect. I rank it with the likes of Umi and Chaya (future posts)


My dining companion chose the pan roasted chicken for her main. The dish was comprised of a perfectly cooked thigh and breast, fingerling potatoes and a wasabi chimchurri. It may have been the best chicken dish I’ve had in recent memory. Highly, highly recommended.

Pan Roasted Chicken fingerling potato and wasabi chimichurri

The only dish that could outshine my dates was my Paella, and it may be my favorite dish in Pittsburgh, wow. The amount of seafood on the plate is ridiculous; this dish would cost twice as much in a city like Philly, or NY. The saffron rice itself is perfectly cooked. A bit crispy on top with a nice moist interior. I really appreciated that it was not doused in oil or butter. Pan roasted apples were a nice touch that worked surprisingly well.

Paella shrimp mussels calamari chorizo chayote and saffron rice

The service during our meal was perfect, as it has been on all my visits. Tamari is currently tops of the tops on my go to list, and I hope to return soon to sample more of chef Li’s dishes.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Kim Valentine

Great thorough review. Your choices are dishes I'd order myself. I would love some of that nigiri right now. Looks fresh and has a nice fish/rice ratio.

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