Modestly tucked in on a long stretch of Washington Boulevard, FIN Asian Tapas Bar, a seductively enchanting lounge-like restaurant comes to life nightly, offering tasty Asian tapas and vibrant cocktails. As if a sushi bar has been turned upside down and merged with the culinary styles of French, American and Latin cooking, The menu, a culmination of curiously creative and delicious dishes will see some change as FIN introduces their New Spring Menu!
Kicking-off the menu are Cold Dishes of fresh sashimi, ceviche, tuna tartare and one-of-a-kind tasty tacos. The Jicama Fish Tacos with Asian Slaw, a refreshingly unique dish composed of hand-breaded Basa Sole wrapped in a crisp-cut Jicama taco shell and topped with Asian coleslaw and a kiss of chipotle. Another unique and spicy spin on the shrimp taco, the Tiger Prawn Tacos are minced and served in crispy bite-sized wontons with wasabi aioli and ponzu pico de gallo. A light, yet decadent standout, the Lightly Seared Beef Carpaccio with Japanese Vinaigrette is a deliciously satisfying carpaccio, delicately seared with a light flame, drizzled with chive truffle oil and topped with crispy shitake mushrooms and micro greens garnish.
Bright and clean flavors shine in the Citrus Salmon Sashimi Truffle, thinly sliced wild Alaskan salmon topped with shaved black truffles, and drizzled with a citrus truffle soy dressing so delectable, you would be remiss to rid your table of the excess sauce left on the plate. A FIN insider tip: Order up a pair of the Baked Crab Hand Rolls to follow, so that you can dip the crab meat wrapped in sesame encrusted white soy paper in the citrus truffle soy dressing. An unexpectedly delicious pairing that Flanagan and Reyes discovered during a meal one evening!
Fresh-caught and seasonal, Hot Dishes from the Sea include Seared Kiwi Scallops with a pairing of fire-roasted kiwi slices, topped with succulent Japanese sautéed scallops, sweet soy glaze and garnished with a crispy lotus root, almost too pretty to eat. The Miso Glazed Black Cod is steeped in sake and marinated in miso, baked and served with poached asparagus and carrots.
Rounding out the menu are Hot Dishes from the Land, Asian-influenced prepared proteins served with American comfort food style sides. Pepper Encrusted Filet Mignon with Truffle Mash Potato and Plum Reduction Wine Sauce is decadent and the truffle mash potatoes almost appear speckled from the rich shavings of black truffle generously mixed in. An aromatic dish, the Pan Seared Miso Ginger Chicken Breast is tender and served with rosemary mashed potatoes.
Simple and sweet, Desserts include a balance of the light and rich locally baked Brownies (peanut butter, chocolate and rocky road flavored) from the neighboring Hot Cakes Bakery with Black Sesame Ice Cream, Cheesecake with Strawberry Sauce and a selection of traditional Mochi (Japanese rice cake ice cream) in strawberry, vanilla, green tea and red bean choices. And for those who prefer to sip their sweets, try a house made Key Lime Martini or Espresso Martini made with vodka, Bailey’s, Kahlua and Frangelico, two of FIN’s four dessert cocktails crafted by Managing Partner and Beverage Director, Kenneth Whang.
“I strive for a good balance between bartending and mixology. Creative, yet simple, I use farm fresh ingredients and try to really showcase the flavors from each component used to prepare each cocktail,” says Whang.
Far from the typical beer and sake sushi counter, FIN’s drink list consists of seven signature cocktails, eighteen sakes, six bottled beers and a wine list composed of six bubblies, eleven whites and thirteen reds.
From cool and brisk to spicy and hearty, there is a lovable libation for every type of cocktail connoisseur. Evoking the rejuvenating flavor of “spa water,” the Shiso Rockin, is crafted with Rock sake, vodka, lime juice, muddled cucumber and shiso, and the Drunken Sumo, a fiery indulgent, is mixed with tequila, jalapeño, lime juice and agave. Whang’s favorite cocktail is his twist on the classic Old Fashioned that he appropriately named the Washington Boulevard which is made with Bulleit bourbon, Aperol, Amaro, a dash of bitters and garnished with an orange peel.
A collision of diversity, FIN is the product of creativity born from a broad cultural landscape and the background of each partner. A truly unique dining experience, cool and current, it is a diamond in the rough with a requisite for success! Stop by soon to indulge in the exclusive new spring flavors!
FIN Asian Tapas Bar is open from 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm Monday through Thursday, 5:00 pm to 11:30 pm on Friday and Saturday, and 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm on Sunday. For more information, please visit www.FinCulverCity.com or call FIN directly at 310.398.8611.
– Lawrence Moore