Hoppin’ On a Delectable Sushi TrainCover Story
March 18, 2018
Story By: Caroline Wright | Photos by: Anthony Consillio
No matter what time of day or evening you visit Genki Sushi at Pearlridge Uptown, there might be a sizable line of customers waiting for seats. This is, after all, one of Hawaii’s best-known, much-loved sushi restaurants.
Don’t worry! Even if there’s a line, you likely won’t have to wait too long. And this is the only restaurant at Pearl-ridge Center with its own Bullet Express.
Named for Japan’s high-speed trains, the Bullet Express is a double-rail sushi delivery system that kids of all ages find delightful. Genki’s interactive, automated ordering process begins when guests place their orders on tablet touchscreen menus. Within a few short moments, plates of hand-crafted nigiri, gunkan and hand-rolled sushi are speedily delivered to happy diners on surfboards, trains, space shuttles and Formula One racecars.
The system is fast, easy to use, and fun. On Dining Out‘s recent visit, two boys navigated the touchscreen menu while their mom waited patiently for them to make their selections.
“What’s that one?” the younger kid asked his big brother, pointing at an image on the tablet.
The older boy studied the words under the photo for a moment. “Dragon Roll!”
“Awesome!” the little brother yelled. “Let’s get some!”
Within minutes, the boys were happily munching on their dragon rolls and looking for new things to sample. The Bullet Express, also featured at Genki Sushi’s Ala Moana, Waikele, Kaneohe and Kapahulu locations, can be a great way to encourage kids to try new foods.
For the busiest customers, those who don’t even have time for the high-speed Bullet Express, Genki Sushi’s brand-new Bentos To Go are a perfect option. At $7.99 each, the little boxes are stuffed with a delectable assortment of treats, beginning with your choice of garlic chicken, squid or chicken karaage, or chicken katsu. Then, select two sushi options from a list that includes inari, California rolls, kappa maki, oshinko maki, kanpyo maki and ume maki. For just $1.50 more, you can opt to substitute spicy tuna or ahi poke instead of sushi.
To complete the meal, each bento includes salad and cold tofu. They’re now offered at all of Genki Sushi’s Hawaii locations.
Roughly translated, genki is the Japanese word for “vigor,” and it’s appropriate, as many of the items on the menu here are not only delicious but nutritious, too. Salmon and ahi sashimi, edamame, miso soup, avocado maki and several different salads are available for those seeking lighter fare. And the chain’s combination and party platters, ranging in price from $22 to $57, are perfect for large gatherings.
As the two little boys finish their tamago, ebi fry and dragon rolls, their attention is diverted. This time, they’re captivated by a new selection of plates passing by on the kaiten belt — Genki Sushi’s original automated delivery system.
“Cupcakes!” they holler in unison, eliciting chuckles from the other diners and a bit of hushing from their mother.
“All right, go ahead, guys,” Mom says after a moment. “Grab one for me, too!”