There are certain restaurants that come up in conversation and, even if you are my sworn enemy, if you like the restaurant, you are in store for a bear hug and said hug may last a little too long. Tasu is like that for me. This is the place that my girlfriend and I go to if we want a relaxing evening or feel like celebrating for no great reason.
I normally talk about the atmosphere at this point of the article, but this one is difficult because I always arrive at Tasu very early like 6 PM or so, so early that people have not started crowding the host stand. The atmosphere is asian chic, dim lights, shiny black surfaces, lots of two top tables, nice bar menu etc. The crowd is dressed like its a convention and the waiters keep it simple and classy in all black. Boats of sushi are constantly sailing out of the kitchen and bottles of wine are served table side, BUT the whining kid at the next table is the first queue that this is all a deception, because this restaurant really is the Best Deal in the Triangle! It is not for business professionals alone. It is for families and young couples and girls night out. It’s a great place to feel classy, spoiled, happily bloated, and not worry about your bank statement the rest of the evening.
First off, all of the sushi at Tasu is top notch (especially for this region). We have been to some of Raleigh’s nicer sushi restaurants, but their flavors are comparable to this place only they charge (literally) twice as much. Did I mention that Tasu’s rolls are always buy one get one free (dine in only)? Every roll from the $6 options to the $17 have all hit the spot for me.
The deal of the day (365 days a year) is Tasu’s Asian Feast. You and your guest get one appetizer, two soups or salads, two entrees and a dessert and it is the price of ordering two entrees and an appetizer. What makes this deal different from other restaurants that offer something similar is that your options are not restricted in any way, shape, or form. No appetizer is off limits (even the sushi plate), no entree is too much, and no dessert is not worth trying at least once. This is the one restaurant where our entrees never waver. I always get the Samurai Hibachi (steak, chicken and shrimp) and my girlfriend always gets the peking duck and the best part is that after enjoying our appetizer, soup, and maybe two sushi rolls, we hardly touch our entrees, but they are great leftover.
I have seriously only tried two of Tasu’s entrees (I love them so), but I think at this point I have tried all of their appetizers and I finally met an item on their menu that I actually decided to send back. Their calamari is the worse I have ever head, which is a shocking misstep for the restaurant and a poor representation of the fine food coming out of that kitchen. It is breaded and fried like a tempura, but the squid itself was very chewy. In fact, I think I saw kids playing jacks with it at another table. Unfortunately it came with a sweet sauce that I was sad to see leave the table. Seriously though, that is the only complaint I have ever had about this restaurant. When I am leaving, I always hear about how customers are having to wait an hour for a table and how another customer had to wait an hour just to park. In tense situations like this, you expect the waiters to go AWOL, the kitchen to get backed up and your food get lost in the process, or for the host to be seating your table while you are signing the bill, but I have never had a problem. In fact the service is so prompt that it is one of the few restaurants that I consistently find myself wanting to tip over 20% and it’s because I don’t just see my waiter during my meal. The staff help each other run food, give out refills, etc. Some places get an hour wait for no good reason. At Tasu, you get what you wait for and you get much, much more than what you pay for. This is easily one of my three favorite restaurants in the triangle. Who wants a bear hug?
Taste = Very good
Portions = above average
Price = mid high
Service = amazing
Atmosphere = classy, yet comfortable
Total Value = VERY HIGH!