My inaugural A to Z happy hour took place on Inauguration Day — an auspicious sign I think. I also think the Inauguration is why it was insanely easy to find parking in Fell’s Point directly in front of Asahi. The rest of the city must have been shuffling back from the Mall or living it up at a ball.
Compared to a black tie affair with Beyonce belting Ella James, we had a modest evening, but a most satisfying one. I never tried the old Asahi location (across Broadway and a few blocks south) so I can’t make comparisons, but the current spot is pretty and I’m told much bigger than the old spot. Painted a relaxing light green, the interior is spanking new and sparkling clean, a pleasant nice contrast to the perpetually scrubby Broadway.
Asahi is BYOB, so it’s easy to keep costs down and splurge on food, if you can even call it splurging. I had a veggie roll and a spicy tuna roll for $11 including tip. My one and only complaint was that the sushi was rolled a bit loosely. I almost lost a roll or two in transit with my middling chopstick skills. I love BYOB — I’m surprised that the places that have it don’t promote it more, especially during the Economic End of Days. (The Wine Source in Hampden has a list of BYOB places as does Dining@Large, albeit from almost a year ago.)
The service was very nice, and content to let a clutch of chatty friends linger for a long time on a slow night. I even enjoyed the Boordy wine my friend brought, which I usually find too sweet. But maybe I was just too joyful to be critical — one of my happy hour cohorts announced she was expecting her first child, there was a promising new President of the United States, and I was, for once, keeping a New Year’s Resolution.