City Paper is not for tourists
The Dish: lunch bento box No. 1, with nigiri sushi, spicy tuna roll, miso soup, and house salad
The Location: Sushi Go Round and Tapas, 705 7th St. NW. (202) 393-2825.
The Price: $12.95
The Skinny: Let’s get this out of the way immediately: Sushi Go Round and Tapas—with its baffling references to Japanese nigiri, Spanish small plates, and a children’s carnival ride—may be the single most convoluted restaurant name in history. With a name like that, you’re expectations hover somewhere near bedrock. This bento box far exceeds those expectations, which is not damning with faint praise. The box, which the server elegantly disassembles tableside from its black vertical tower, contains a wealth of well-composed bites: six pieces of simple, fresh nigiri (only the shrimp tastes as if it isn’t perfectly fresh), three pieces of spicy tuna roll (which live up to their fiery billing), a mixed-leaf salad with a mild ginger dressing, and some earthy brown rice. The best touch is a single, perfectly sliced strawberry, which is surprisingly sweet given the time of year. To me, the slivers of fruit serve as a far better palate cleanser than the pickled ginger, which can take your tongue hostage. When you’re done with the bento box, you can walk next door to Häagen-Dazs and order a small cup of dulce de leche ($3.49), an ice cream swirled with the Latin American caramel. That’s about as close to Spanish cuisine as you’re gonna get at Sushi Go Round.