Sushi Nakano | Ahwatukee | Sushi, Japanese | Restaurant
Dominic Armato

Sushi Nakano

Jackie Mercandetti Photo
This is what every neighborhood sushi restaurant should be, but precious few are. Leo Nakano was long a familiar face at Scottsdale’s Hiro Sushi, where he learned the craft from his father. But in 2018, the younger Nakano set out on his own, opening this tiny, unassuming joint in an Ahwatukee strip mall that slings some of the finest Edo-style sushi in town at a price point that’s an absolute steal for the quality. For a modest price bump over the mediocre Phoenix standard, Nakano offers a compact list of sashimi that’s meticulously sourced and cut, and nigiri that sagely highlights the quality of the rice, rather than treating it as a dull vehicle for the fish. Those who prefer American-style sushi will appreciate Nakano's maki. But better yet, if you’re seeking something creative, catch him on a quiet night and ask for some of his signature nigiri, such as salmon with a thin sliver of pickled kombu or kuro-dai briefly cold-smoked before serving.