Home Community Towa’s New Nextowa Neighbor Serves Delicious Fare in a Casual Setting

Towa’s New Nextowa Neighbor Serves Delicious Fare in a Casual Setting

Towa’s New Nextowa Neighbor Serves Delicious Fare
in a Casual Setting

By Yuka Foley
The North American Post

Chef Eichi Sato right and head server Kaho Henmi

Towa, the kaiseki restaurant opened last September by I Love Sushi on Lake Bellevue, has a new nextdoor neighbor. Nextowa, its sister restaurant, opened just before Christmas.

Unlike Towa, which offers reservations-only kaiseki courses, Nextowa provides fresh sashimi and other dishes in a casual, homey environment. Customers first place their orders at the counter to the left of the entrance, then take a seat at an available table and wait for their dishes to be delivered.

The staff themselves finished the tables and walls, creating a cozy atmosphere that is enhanced by the soothing background music.

The special sashimi selection fetaures the freshest fish flown in from Kyushu and Tokyo

The manager and head chef, Eiichi Sato, is originally from Tokyo and has lived abroad for more than 30 years. He is a true culinary professional with a rich background. In Japan, he trained in a Kappo restaurant and a traditional Japanese restaurant before moving to Vancouver, Canada, in 1990. He finally relocated to Seattle in 2006. He has gained valuable experience at I Love Sushi on Lake Bellevue since then.

▲The restaurant’s roast beef donburi ($28) features mouthwatering beef sourced from Missouri and a special housemade sauce.

Nextowa’s must-try is the sashimi sets using fresh fish that is flown in regularly from Kyushu and Tokyo. The sets come in three price ranges. The standard set ($25) offers five varieties: albacore, salmon, tuna, hamachi and madai. The special set ($35) comes with eight types: albacore, salmon, chutoro, hamachi, madai, hotate, shimesaba and amaebi.

◀︎ The premium sashimi set ($45) comes with grilled fish, pickled vegetables, rice, miso soup and eight types of sashimi, including three chef’s choices.

And the premium plate ($45) serves up eight types of sashimi as well as a selection of ikura or uni. There is also a sashimi-tempura set for $25. Each set comes with rice, miso soup and three kinds of homemade appetizers that change daily.

Today’s distribution technology has made delicious Japan-sourced fish more accessible. Enriched by the nutrient-rich Kuroshio current, Japan has an ideal environment that cultivates high-quality fish. Chef Sato and crew say they want their customers to experience the best of Japan’s culinary traditions, which includes sashimi. They encourage the whole family including children to learn about the varieties of sashimi and hope that the delicious fish from Japan will be their first experience. While fresh sashimi may still be relatively expensive, Nextowa would be pleased if people can find value and satisfaction in fish through its set meals.

▲Nextowa is all about promoting the mouthwatering goodness of fresh fish from Japan. Its standard serving ($25) comes with two slices each of tuna, hamachi and madai, and three slices each of albacore and salmon. 

▶︎ Nextowa’s unagi is prepared in the fuwatoro style known for its fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth texture.

Nextowa also offers three kinds of meticulously made donburi entrees. The eels used in the unagi donburi are bought live from a store in Maine. Sato carefully grills the steamed eel on a net, basting it with sauce multiple times. The thick eel is prepared in the fuwatoro style known for its fluffy and melting texture, typical of the Kanto region. It is a world apart from commercially available frozen ones and is truly a luxurious dish.

I Love Sushi on Lake Bellevue serves eel in the karitoro style known for its crispy outside and melting texture inside. Karitoro style eel is a specialty of the Kansai region.

Donburi dishes featuring meat are quite popular, too. The Missouri-sourced roast beef donburi features thick and tender roast beef, perfectly complemented by grated onion sauce, along with garlic chips. The Hokkaido obihiro-style black pork donburi features Missouri-produced black pork topped with rich caramel sauce infused with butter. All donburi entrees come with miso soup, two daily homemade side dishes and a salad with the same carrot-based dressing used at I Love Sushi on Lake Bellevue.

▲The iconic Hokkaido obihiro-style kurobuta pork donburi goes for $25. 

Chef Sato takes his time grilling the eel to make sure the meat is at its tenderest and tastiest

One of Nextowa’s appetizers is simmered shiitake mushrooms, which are rich in flavor, each bite releasing a delightful aroma and umami that gently spread in the mouth. The miso soup in the set includes a variety of vegetables such as daikon radish, shiitake mushrooms, carrots, konjac, thick-fried tofu, green onions, burdock root, potatoes and more. The broth is made from a vegetable base of shiitake mushrooms and kelp with a touch of bonito flakes, providing a rich and hearty flavor, which is likely to make you crave for more.

The head server working side by side with Chef Sato is Kaho Henmi, who was promoted from her position at I Love Sushi on Lake Bellevue. She emphasizes a customer-centric approach, striving to understand and adjust to individual preferences.

▲Nextowa’s unagi comes in two sizes: 5 ounces for $30 and 10 ounces for $55. This is unagi like you’ve never tasted it before.

It’s a delightful experience to casually savor authentic Japanese cuisine with Japanese service. At Nextowa, the entire restaurant can be reserved for private events. The space is perfect for gatherings of three or four families to celebrate special occasions like birthdays or parties.


located at 17875 Redmond Way, Suite 150, Redmond, WA 98052.
Lunch is served from 11:30 to 2:00, and dinner is from 4:30 to 8:00. The restaurant is closed Mondays and Tuesdays.

Tel. 425-522-4629 Email: info@nextowa.com