Just when you thought the sushi boom in Wichita had hit critical mass, along comes Jacky Chan Sushi. This tiny place opened up in the spring of 2014 at Central and Oliver, replacing the small building that formerly housed Sit@Thai Express. What caught my attention about this place was the fact that the sushi chef(who goes by Jacky Chan) had previously worked at Kwan Court, one of our most missed former restaurants.
This is an intimate setting with only a few tables in the small dining area. It is a nice change of pace from other sushi joints in town that rely on loud music and an open seating area for ambiance. The menu features a lot of options, but is not as overwhelming as some sushi menus that take several hours to fully comprehend. Jacky Chan also does not go overboard with the crazy deep fried rolls. While there are certainly some creative dishes, there is also a respect for the simplicity of traditional sushi. If someone in your group is not into sushi there are several fried rice dishes, noodle bowls, and even Pho for them.
During our lunch time visit we could not pass up the Kansas roll. This sushi roll was one of our favorites at Kwan Court so we were pleased to see Jacky was offering it. We also ordered both the A and B Sushi lunch options to get a good sampler of what they had to offer.
While waiting for our meals to come out, our waitress brought us each a sample of their Hot and Sour soup. I am not one to complain about free soup, so I happily consumed this impressive bowl of sliced bamboo, eggs, mushrooms,tofu, and carrots with a nice gingery kick. Next out was the Kansas Maki Roll which consisted of grilled steak, crab,and lettuce. While the steak was overdone(which seems strange to say at a sushi place), the maki roll was still as good as the Kwan Court version. After we polished off the Kansan our lunch specials came out. Both featured two different maki rolls, several pieces of nigiri(thinly sliced raw fish and a ball of rice), and large ball of sushi rice with some fish roe. My favorites were the unagi(freshwater eel) with a sweet glaze and the Philly maki. The most
interesting offering was the egg sushi. It was basically a Japanese omelet, which is denser and sweeter than the American version, perched atop sushi rice. The texture was a bit odd, but I enjoyed trying something new. I thought the raw fish samples where about as good as you can find here in Wichita. For $10 the sushi lunch was a good deal for some basic and simple sushi. Next time I would like to try some of the other specialty rolls that looked interesting.
As we were leaving the restaurant, I happened to notice Jacky Chan himself was out in the back of the building scaling a fine looking fish. Although I’m sure the health department wouldn’t be too impressed, I was. I’m sure that same scene takes place every day in Japan. There is plenty of competition in Wichita when it comes to sushi and I think I will have to give Jacky’s another try before I pass ultimate judgement.