Yusho

Yusho

By Jennifer Worrell

While we can’t satisfy our cravings from a cart, we can now get our mobile mojo on, via Logan Square's yakitori hotspot. Matthias Merges, formerly of Charlie Trotter’s, puts his artful skills to work creating Japanese-style tidbits, packed with intense umami flavor. While eel may not suit all tastes, here you will fall in love with the melt-in-your-mouth brandade, a deep-fried purée of cod, eel and a little wasabi, sprinkled with bits of crunchy hominy and homemade beer-infused mustard. The chicken wings are a juicy boneless creation, skewered with a side of bonito salt and lime. A fizzy paloma, this summer’s seasonal cocktail of Herencia añejo tequila and mezcal blended with grapefruit and lime, is the perfect complement. Lush, crisp Thai basil ice cream with coconut macaroons provides a welcome chill in this oppressive Chicago heat.

the crowd

The bar in front suggests that Yusho caters to the young singles crowd, but it’s a great place for families earlier in the evening and on weekends during the Ramen Noodle Brunch. That’s right—with indulgent combinations like pork shoulder, hen egg, nori and cucumber, ramen noodles are no longer just for college kids trying to survive on the cheap.

... on the side

eye for design
The front dining room evokes a colorful saloon with exposed brick and wood slat walls, a shelf of mason jars above the open kitchen and lilights hanging from ropes. The back room, peppered with fake trees and brightly lit with the aid of skylights, gives the feeling that you’re eeating outdoors for that true street fare vibe.

decibels
The music is unobtrusive, switching seamlessly between ambient Electronica to tracks from the Talking Heads or The Beastie Boys.

hours

Sun–Thu 5PM–10PM; Fri–Sat 5PM–12AM; Sunday ramen noodle brunch 12PM–5PM

price range

$3.25 (oyster) to $18 (foie gras)
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