The Lincoln Eatery, Miami Beach's first modern food hall, announces the opening of Ai Sushi. Sister concept of chef Carlos Zheng’s Ai Tallarin, Ai Sushi specializes in authentic Japanese cuisine, featuring signature maki, traditional rolls and high-quality sushi-grade sashimi. The concept was inspired by chef Zheng’s Asian culinary background and his passion for creating authentic cuisine.
Chef Zheng pulls inspiration from each culture’s culinary background to create the ultimate sushi-fusion concept. Chef Zheng grew up cooking countless regional dishes from all around Asia. He studied under the great master sushi chef Noboru Sanada before moving to Miami where he joined the team at Sushi Samba in Coral Gables, among other popular eateries in South Florida. Ai Tallarin and now, Ai Sushi, are his latest passion projects. The offerings are inspired by Japanese tradition but influenced by today’s Asian-fusion culinary trends.
“Creating concepts such as Ai Tallarin and now Ai Sushi has given me the freedom to be creative while also challenging me,” says chef Carlos Zheng. “Being challenged in this industry is what motivates me to find unique ways to blend together different cuisines to create enticing dishes.”
The culinary outpost will operate daily at the Lincoln Eatery, serving lunch and dinner within the decorated stall within the food hall, which houses over 12 global food concepts. Ai Sushi features signature maki rolls like Ai’s Rainbow Maki ($16), kanikama, avocado, tuna, salmon , yellowtail, camote crisp and aji crema; Smoked Hamachi Maki ($17), shrimp tempura, cilantro, avocado, hamachi top, smoked jalapeno dressing; the Aburi Salmon Maki ($15), soy marinated salmon , asparagus, avocado, soy paper, truffle sweet chili; La Mar Maki ($17), kanikama, avocado, seafood tartar, mozzarella cheese, truffle sweet soy; or the Sappari Maki ($16), daikon wrap, tuna, salmon , hamachi , avocado, asparagus, strawberry vinaigrette.
Guests can also choose to indulge in more traditional rolls, such as the Tekka Maki ($8), Spicy Tuna Roll ($9), Spicy Salmon Roll ($9), Philly Roll ($10), Negihama Roll ($11), California Roll ($7), Avocado Roll ($6), or the Cucumber Roll ($6). Or, choose from the sushi-grade sashimi options such as Chirashi Bowl ($21), made with tuna, hamachi, salmon, shrimp, tamago, unagi, avocado, cucumber, seaweed salad, and shiso; Sushi Assortment ($23), a platter that serves tuna, hamachi, salmon, shrimp, branzino, unagi, scallops, and spicy tuna; or the Sashimi Assortment ($23), served with 2 tuna sashimi, 2 salmon sashimi, 2 hamachi sashimi, and 2 branzino sashimi.
For some light bites, guests can choose from an array of options such as the Seaweed Salad with Tuna ($16), a wakame salad blended with tuna, edamame, carrots, avocado, radish, and sesame oil; House Salad with Tuna ($16), edamame, carrots, avocado, red onion, radish, cherry tomatoes, topped with ginger dressing; Krab Salad ($11), made with kanikama, edamame, avocado, red onion, cucumber, topped with arare and drizzled with spicy mayo; Tuna Tataki ($17), served with garlic chips, garlic oil, avocado, asparagus, garnished with scallions; Steak Tataki ($16), served with a truffle ponzu sauce, garlic chips, red onions, Kizami wasabi, and scallions; or the Salmon Crudo ($17), served with mango salsa, yuzu oil, Serrano peppers, garnished with lemon zest.
Ai Sushi is now open and operating daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and located within the Lincoln Eatery Food Hall. Stay up to date on Ai Sushi by following @AiTallarinandSushi and @LincolnEatery on Instagram.