The new sushi restaurant Nimblefish will start slicing today at 1524 SE 20th Ave., just off Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard (formerly Boxer Sushi). With its impressive team, Nimblefish is shaping up to serve meticulously sourced and sliced sushi, sashimi, and hand rolls in a casual setting for a good price, operating Tuesday through Saturday, from 5 to 10 p.m.
Nimblefish comes from Cody Auger, the chef behind the standout Fukami sushi pop-up and the accomplished, now-shuttered Hokusei; his right-hand man, Dwight Rosendahl; and Davenport co-owner Kurt Heilemann, who will lead the bar program and run the dining room.
Auger describes Nimblefish as a “streamlined” version of his other projects. That means it has the old-school tick-the-box sushi menu (see below), but the proteins and rice will get the same careful preparations, right down to folding the vinegar in to the rice using a hangiri, a large, traditional Japanese wooden tub.
To add richness to its sushi, Nimblefish has created a yuzu-mayo, in place of more common options like cream cheese, and it always dismisses artificial crab for the real deal. Auger said he has made one concession, using some farmed fish, in order to offer things like salmon year round.
Nimblefish is also embracing wine pairings. “If you visit sushi restaurants around the world,” says Heilemann, “they always have robust wine lists. We want to be able to provide bright and light wines to guests who want them.”
And while there are spirits, Heilemann says they’ll only be served neat — not in cocktails — to maintain the focus on pure flavors.
Nimblefish will offer traditional service, with waiters taking orders at the table, and there’s a long counter for seats with views of the chefs at work. More details on Nimblefish’s rustic, organic design soon. For now, here are Nimblefish’s opening-day food and drink menus: