I have a collection of bad restaurant experiences. Every place is entitled to a bad day and I’ll usually try the location again, but other times a visit is so disastrous that I want to forget I ever consumed the food. I rarely write about either of those on EatingPlaces. But sometimes my dining experience is in a different category. Sometimes the level of ridiculousness makes me laugh. So this I’ll share.
I met up with a friend for lunch at Osushi in Copley Place earlier this month for lunch. The interior is trendy, but comfortable, and the Japanese/sushi restaurant seats about 35 including a small bar. The menu is limited, there are no lunch specials (there’s a lunch menu on their website, but that was nowhere to be found during my visit), and prices are on the high end, particularly considering my experience.
Arriving before my friend, I stepped inside and looked at the menu. There were staff people behind the sushi bar, but no host or server in sight. A few minutes later a man comes in from out in the mall and says to me:
(Smiling, very enthusiastic) Oh hi! Are you Brandy?
No, I’m not Brandy.
Well are you meeting someone?
Yes…but she’s not here yet.
You’re not Brandy?
No. I’m not.
And then he walks past me, picking up an order at the sushi bar, and serves a table inside. Do I not get seated if my name isn’t Brandy? The man doesn’t come back to the entrance, where I’m still standing, for a few minutes. When he finally returns, I say “I’m waiting for a friend, but I would like to sit down while I wait.” And that’s when the host offers to check my coat and I’m seated. Interesting start.
My friend arrives and we’re offered menus from who I think will be our server. He’s friendly and seems attentive. He brings water with the menus and we ask for tea. Nothing for 10 minutes. Our server comes back with the tea and takes our order. I ask for the ‘Mini Combo’, which comes with miso soup, salad, four pieces of sushi (saba, whitefish, tuna, and salmon), and a California roll or Spicy Tuna roll ($15).
30 minutes go by without soup or salad. When we first sat down about half the tables were full, but at this point (we had been there for 45 minutes) the lunch hour was passing and there were 8 or 10 people in the entire restaurant. Maybe they’re making the miso?…
The miso soup arrives, which was the best part of the meal. Unfortunately.
A tiny salad follows, brought over by someone else. I was still ready to devour 5 rolls of sushi at this point and a huge white bowl with tiny anemic end pieces of lettuce was not what I had in mind. For reference, that’s a cherry tomato in the photo.
The waiting continues for about 15 minutes, until we receive the sushi from a third person. And there is no soy sauce. So we wait another few minutes until we could get anyone’s attention (our server(s) had disappeared, I think I asked the runner from the restaurant to the hotel for soy sauce).
I start with the spicy tuna roll and it’s not spicy, nor is it flavorful or constructed with any skill. I could put together a better-looking pile of rice and tuna. Then I move on to the sushi – the salmon is great, the saba was a strange texture and seemed off, and I literally do not know which is the tuna and which is whitefish because neither look like tuna and both were the fishy smell you never want associated with raw fish. So, as you may have guessed by now, our server didn’t come back once to check on us. I ate the salmon and some of the Spicy Tuna roll, leaving the rest.
My friend ordered the Makimono Combo (one tekka maki, one California roll, and one una-avo roll with soup and salad), which was a slightly better choice because there was less raw fish, but we were both very unsatisfied by the end (because of the food; our visit together was great – how often do you get to sit in a Boston restaurant, completely uninterrupted, for nearly 2 hours?).
Our bill arrives from the original server who gave us the menus, we paid, and the Are-You-Brandy-Host/Server is still gone, so I picked up my coat and returned the coat tag myself. First time for everything! I’m not sure why they would offer to check my coat if they weren’t planning to return it. We left with significantly less money (especially for lunch) and I was still hungry. Thank goodness for fun company.
This place is only surviving on Groupon deals and unaware conference attendees. Don’t go to Osushi (it’s difficult to find in the mall, so maybe if you tried to go, you gave up and went somewhere else, anyway). There are plenty of less expensive sushi places in Boston that have fresh fish and good service.
Not that you need it, but:
Osushi, Copley Place, 10 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA