Shizen Vegan Sushi Bar & Izakaya

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San Francisco’s newest vegan restaurant is also the Bay Area’s best. In just a few months, it has already garnered over 100 five-star reviews on Yelp and after going there for the first time, we’ll add our own. We had given up vegan sushi because nori seaweed, the traditional, dark greed seaweed used for sushi rolls, is often germinated on old oyster shells. Oysters have nerve nets and feel pain so we didn’t want to support an industry which killed the oysters to supply their shells to the nori industry. But Shizen offers soybean paper wrapped sushi rolls instead of nori if you ask for it. We had California rolls and avocado rolls, mushrooms stuffed with faux-crab, and spicy “tuna” rolls. We also had edamame in a garlic reduction, pot stickers, perfectly grilled asparagus and vegan plum wine and cocktails; our server told us that the drink menu had recently been revised to ensure all alcoholic offerings were vegan. We finished the evening with mochi for dessert. The food is beautifully presented, it isn’t rushed (the dishes come out one at a time), but most of all, everything was delicious.

Shizen Sushi is at 370 14th St in San Francisco.

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