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“Absolutely amazing”

Aji Japanese Bistro
Certificate of Excellence
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Reviewed June 17, 2014

This is the hidden gem of California. I am lucky to live in the area so I been able to try almost everything on the menu. My goal was to find a dish that I would not like but I have not found one. This restaurant is a Japanese tapas so the dishes are like samplers which is great. They have the traditional sushi which is amazing along the with an oyster bar. I do like the tapas plates the best-- some of the must try is the Kalbi tacos(Korean bulgogi beef in a taco), kakuni buns (pork belly in chashu bun), rock shrimp lettuce cups ( shrimp with soba noodles on top with a roasted walnut in a lettuce cup), and the aji slider (I usually ask for the lunch aji burger which is a whole burger) with the most amazing spicy fries.
On Sunday for brunch, they have a mini Hawaiian menu but all you need to say is loco moco. It is crazy good. It is a teriyaki aji burger over fried rice with an egg and gravy on top. So ono...
The chef is not scared to create anything you want. I asked for fried poke which is better than any in Honolulu.
The chocolate cake is a must.
The servers and service is outstanding.

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Thank traveldream8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (117)
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Reviewed June 8, 2014

It may seem a bit strange to comment on the French fries in a Japanese restaurant but they were excellent, crisp and nice seasoning. I had the pulled pork sandwich and it was good, although a bit greasy.
The service was good in general. However, I asked for a glass of water when I first arrived and the hostess brought me a carafe of water, no ice in the glass or the carafe. She seemed a bit annoyed that I had asked her for a glass of water right away. It was a hot day and I had to take some medication with water. I did not think it was an unusual request.

My friend ordered iced tea but the glass was filled to the top with ice, not enough tea. So, too much ice in the ice tea and none in my water :-).

The waiter was very nice and knowledgeable about the dishes being served. However, he never acknowledged my friend's birthday. Usually, restaurants give a little something at the end of the meal to the birthday person.
I asked about desserts and they serve only 3 desserts which were not on the menu. A green tea creme brulée, chocolate cake and strawberry short cake. Not appealing to either one of us, so we ended up having dessert somewhere else.
I probably will give this restaurant another try. There are things on the menu that look appealing and I'd like to sample them. And those French fries certainly deserve another trip !

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Thank Karina1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2014

It's hard to write one review for Aji...so much to say! I discovered Aji in January 2014 and have been dining there at least once a week since...so suffice to say I have had many of the menu and cocktail items and experienced most of the servers. Aji has traditional Japanese including karaage chicken, shrimp and vegetable teriyaki and wonderful sushi that is not totally gooped up with all kinds of sauce...sauce is delicately applied but if you want more, ask...the sauces are the bomb! The gyoza is hands down the best I have ever had! Originally I went for all those great Japanese traditional dishes and then I hopped on the Asian fusion bandwagon and that, to me, is where Aji shines way above the others! The seared albacore is unreal...fish is always so tender and fresh, served with garlic aioli, sweet onions and ponzu. Amazing taste! The calamari is wonderfully tender every time and I can't get enough of the wasabi yuzu ketchup! I'm not much of a red meat eater but my oldest son forced me to try a Kalbi taco and a new item added to faves! Tender short rib with kimchee slaw. Yum! Check them out on Taco Tuesdays when these tacos are $2 each! You can often find me and my family at Aji during Social Hour...3 to 6pm everyday where Street Foods and some of their finest beverages are reduced. I can't stop talking about the Street Foods without mentioning the Aji-Mame...edamame with ginger, garlic, onion, jalapeño and 5 spice...you will never want plain ole edamame again...but if you do, of course they have it. So cocktails are fresh, original and reasonably priced...just ask them what ingredients are in their Mai Tai...you will be amazed! Food and drinks are consistently excellent and that is something about a restaurant that keeps me coming back but, so is the service at Aji. We dine out enough to notice great staff training (and hiring) and Aji does this so well. All servers we have had are very friendly, professional and know the menu so well that we have always had great recommendations. Nick, the GM and co-owner is extremely motivated to make sure his customers enjoy their dining experience. He tries to check in with every patron during their dinner and I've seen him delivering food and setting tables. He is very hands-on and truly a great example for his staff. From the minute you walk through the doors of Aji, experiencing the fab music and vibe of the interior, you will be well looked after and have a memorable dining experience.

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Thank Cindy J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 31, 2014

Our first meal there was average but the restaurant was only open for a few weeks. We have gone 3 more times and each time it is better. Our spread of food last weekend with friends deserved 4.5 stars! We enjoyed the Seared Albacore, the Grilled Asparagus, the French Fries (really!), the Crispy Calamari, the Gyoza and various sushi rolls. We had a grazing feast with a bottle of wine and a few beers, and actually the check was smaller than I thought it would be. Our service was excellent but we did go early, around 5:30 pm.

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1  Thank Michaela
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 30, 2014

Aji opened in late 2013 in El Dorado Hills, and is a formidable competitor to other restaurants in the area. Everything during our visit with friends was off the charts good, from the cocktails prepared with fresh squeezed juices by their expertly skilled bartenders, to our meals. We sat at the bar and ordered a selection of items from their "happy hour" menu - superb quality food at a reasonable price. Recommend the calamari, mini lamb chops and sushi rolls. You won't be disappointed. The restaurant owner is very visible and takes pride in everything they prepare to ensure his customers are satisfied.

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Thank Love2Travel26x2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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