Isobune (“canal boat”) patented their Sushi Delivery System in 1982, becoming the first sushi boat restaurant in the United States. The original location is tucked inside the Kintetsu Mall in Japantown. They cater to tourists, but locals know where to find a bargain. When it’s busy, order from the boats floating by, but I prefer to place my order with the wait staff. The main reason I go is the California hand roll, made with loads of fresh crab salad, perfectly ripe avocado, and perky cucumber (most of the time — occasionally the cucumber is not so perky). For an added twist, they do an unagi (barbecued eel) version. Items are priced based on plate color — you pile them beside you, and when you’re finished, the server adds them up and gives you the bill.
Tip: Beer, sake, and soft drinks are half off during happy hour, 4–7 p.m. Monday–Friday.
Not to miss: California hand roll, crab salad, shrimp salad, tsubugai (whelk clam), amaebi (sweet shrimp), seared salmon, and spicy scallop nigiri
1737 Post Street (at Buchanan)
Daily 11:30 a.m.–9:30 p.m.