For Valentine's day I met Jenny at Hachi for lunch, the only meal of the day I can be alone with her. Despite the name of the restaurant, the tapas weren't available for lunch, which was a disappointment. I got the sushi lunch, which for $17 was a bit pricey. Yes, the fish was soft and fresh. However, nothing really stood out in this little dish and for the money I expected more. Jenny got the Two Item Bento Box. The pork cutlet was overdone, but I enjoyed the fried coating of the sample I took from her plate. The outer part of the saba was salty, but the rest of the mackerel was the best part of Jenny's lunch.
The mango shrimp tempura roll featured a delightful crunch along with the softness of the mango. It was a great combination. With the sauce, there was a pleasant creaminess to it, too. The seared salmon belly with "special marinade" was a special posted on the wall. At $7 we thought, "why not" and ordered a dish. I enjoyed the fat, the flavor of which dominated everything else. However, overall it was ho-hum.
I admit to being thick at times, but I really should have picked up that Hachi is more about dinner (when the tapas are available) than lunch. When I made the reservation, for 11:30, and I was asked, "am or pm?" I should have known. This is a sake lounge, after all. Moreover, there were only two other tables occupied throughout the lunch hour. And, it was a one man show. The same guy did the cooking, the hosting and the serving. Did I need any more proof they didn't really expect a crowd for lunch?
The bottom line? After tax, but before tip, lunch came to $50--a bit expensive for good food that wasn't great. The limited lunch selection was disappointing.
Hachi Japanese Fusion Tapas, Sushi and Sake Lounge
1711 W El Camino Real
Mountain View, CA 94040