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Best Robata Grill: Here, shellfishness is a virtue 


Kirala is always packed -- and for good reason. Tautly wrapped rice rolls, superb sashimi, and unforgettable robata-grilled treats, all served up by a briskly efficient staff, will bring out the ravenous gourmand within. In the back you'll find a full bar offering more than a dozen different sakes; up front and to the right, a sushi bar wrapped around the grills, and in the middle, a dozen-plus dinner tables. But don't dawdle on your way to the restaurant -- it doesn't take reservations. To snag a seat, you must get in line a half hour before Kirala opens -- even on freezing, teeth-chattering winter nights. But the wait's worth it, especially the grilled seafood, meat, and veggies. Best picks include the baby lobster tail ($8.75), scallops ($5.75), and yes, corn on the cob ($2.50). For the adventuresome, Kirala also serves up a challenging selection of nigiri, from aji (Spanish mackerel) to octopus to uni (sea urchin with quail eggs).
(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)


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