I recently had the honor of attending a blogger and media tasting at Mizu Austin, a Prime Steak and Sushi restaurant in the fancy pants ‘burbs of Austin, aka Lakeway. While the drive really wasn’t that far at all, the food was well worth the couple extra minutes behind the wheel.
We arrived a little early with full intention of taking advantage of the happy hour menu. Mizu offers a happy hour Monday – Saturday from 5 to 7pm (holla at a weekend happy hour!). I started off with an unpictured Skinny Girl drink concoction of Skinny Girl Coconut Vodka, bubbly water, and pineapple juice. It was very refreshing and quite tasty for a skinny cocktail.
After hearing woman at the bar raving about “the best drink they have ever had,” I proceeded to order one of what they were having (I can’t help but think of the scene from When Harry Met Sally). It ended up being a Vanilla Lemonade Punch. I enjoyed it, but a little too sweet for a pre-dinner draaank.
Starving as always, we decided to order the Spicy Edamame and Gyoza (a pork dumpling) to try out before our meal. When Kristi of Epicuriosities arrived, she ordered an Avocado Dynamite which I snatched a few bites from. Out of these 3 plates, I could NOT stop eating the Spicy Edamame.
After admiring the beautiful views of a rainbow from Mizu’s outdoor patio, we proceeded to our tasting. Mizu’s Executive Chef, Jeffrey Hundelt spoke about the different dishes we would be tasting tonight. You could tell how passionate he was about his food from his shy smiles that snuck through his serious food talk.
The night started with another serving of the Spicy Edamame (which I welcomed with open arms), Calamari, and Miso Sea Bass. My favorite was the edamame, but the other dishes were quite tasty too. The sea bass had a sweet, tender flavor and the calamari had a thick tempura-like batter that I have never had on calamari before. It was like the State Fair of Texas with CALAMARI. Nom.
The second round of dishes included Hamachi Crudo, Tuna Tartar, and Usuzukuri Hamachi. Each dish had very distinct characteristic. The Tuna Tartar was served with a plate of colorful fruit, which paired nicely with the tuna. The Hamachi Crudo was served atop a ginger pear puree, with jalapeno and kumquat, leaving you with a sweet and zesty flavor. Lastly, the Usuzukuri Hamachi served with plum ponzu, serrano, cilantro and a hint of lemon had a unique flavor – starting off with one flavor and transforming in your mouth into a different one.
While I thoroughly enjoyed each of these dishes, the best part was our discussion about the oh-so-mysterious “golden bacon” ( seen on the dish directly above) that topped the Hamachi Crudo. After several attempts at figuring out what the golden bacon actually was, Kristin of Epicuriosities took one for the team and tried it. Sadly, it wasn’t bacon. I decided at this point that Kristi does in fact have quite the epicuriosities (insert courtesy laugh here).
The next round of dishes included a selection of sushi rolls. When I eat sushi, I tend to choose rolls over hamachi, so I was quite excited for this round. There were 4 different rolls including the Fenix, a roll with escolar, tuna tartar, cream cheese, lime gastrique and tobiko. The Chorishi Fire was filled with shrimp tempura, spicy tuna, “crunchies”, tobiko, avocado, and spicy mayo. The Mustang Roll had panko crusted soft shell crab, avocado, tobiko, blue crab, wasabi caramel, and sweet miso. The wasabi caramel was unique but delishhhh. The last roll was a Baked Roll, filled with cream cheese goodness.
And finally. The moment I had been waiting for ALL night long: dessert. Of course this was by far my favorite course of the tasting, serving up a variety of sweet treats including Banana Nutella Cake, Warm Brandied Bread Pudding, Vanilla bean Cheesecake, Chocolate Chocolate Cake, and House Spun Sorbet.
Three of the desserts tied for my first place. The Banana Nutella Cake was served with a scoop of banana coconut ice cream that I could eat an entire gallon of. The Bread Pudding was moist, aside from its beautiful presentation, and the Vanilla Bean Cheesecake was the perfect combination of sweet and tangy. I am still dreaming of these desserts.
Overall, Mizu prepared a delicious meal from start to finish. Mizu is a great date night spot, evening getaway with the girls, or family friendly restaurant for those relatives that want a great experience. I highly recommend taking those few extra minutes to drive out to Lakeway, not only for a great meal, but also to enjoy the great views of Austin (and the desserts)!