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).