"Tsuki" is the Japanese name for the moon and, fittingly, under a full moon on 11/11/11, Tsuki had its grand opening as an eat-in and take-out destination for Japanese and Chinese cuisine at 227 Main Street.
"Moon" is also the Chinese first name of Tsuki's sushi chef Liang Zheng, whose forte is also classical Japanese presentations that the China native mastered during his 10-year tenure at the Japanese restaurant Mottsu on Mott Street in New York. (Both establishments are owned by Yun Chen, also a China native.)
These days, Zheng and his fellow Tsuki (pronounced “Sookie”) staffers commute between Norwalk and Mott Street as they ease the transition.
That includes manager Jenny Chen, the pretty and personable manager of Tsuki, who was born in Taiwan and has just settled into a Norwalk apartment.
Chen proudly points to items on the menu that illustrate Tsuki's dedication to quality and ambition.
The grilled squid with Teriyaki sauce ($9) and yellow carpaccio with olive yuzu sauce ($9) are among the signature appetizers.
Signature entrees include the grilled spicy tuna teriyaki ($20), fresh Maine lobster “with Chef special sauce” ($24) and grilled miso marinated black cod ($22).
But pointing out such selections hardly does justice to the variety and breadth of the inventive menu.
Take the Tsuki Special Rolls occupying their own column on the menu.
There’s a Blue Sea Roll (avocado, salmon, cucumber and roll by soy sheet with spicy blue crab, $13.95), Spider (soft-shell crab with spicy mayo, $11.95), Tsuki Roll (shrimp tempura topped with eel, smoked salmon and avocado, $14.95) and a Mayflower Roll (salmon, eel, omelet, flying fish roe with crunchy scallion with eel and spicy mayo sauce, $12.95).
Less-pricy basic rolls include the salmon skin ($5), Kampyo (cooked squash, $4.50), Shiitake mushroom ($5).
While the Japanese side of the menu is the more inventive by far, Tsuki serves up Chinese tried-and-true classics both to appeal to patrons of its predecessor, Hong Kong Kitchen, and because Chinese food is the forte of chef Jason Chen, also a China native.
You will find all the staples of Chinese cuisine: fried rice, noodles and dozens of vegetable, beef, poultry, beef and seafood variations (General Tso’s chicken, scallops with black bean sauce, moo shu pork, hot & spicy beef).
The busy kitchen also prepares Japanese bento boxes for the lunch crowd; each features miso soup, a green salad, two pieces of shrimp shumai and a California roll plus a choice of a main dish ranging from tempura ($10) and sashimi (eight pieces, $12) to white fish with butter ponzu sauce ($12) and salmon teriyaki ($12).
A wooden banquette fitted with red cushioned pillows provides seating for two each at four tables. Delivery is available with a $20 minimum order.
Tsuki is located at 227 Main Street in Norwalk. Hours are Monday – Thursday 11:30 AM to 10 PM, Friday and Saturday 11 AM – 11 PM, Sunday 12 noon – 10 PM. Tel. 203-845-9177. Fax 203-845-8811. www.tsukijapanese.info.