In food-obsessed Sonoma County where the standards and quality of ingredients runs high, a Japanese restaurant has to do more than tempura and California rolls to make a name for itself. Sebastopol’s Kosho is a standout because it executes sushi bar standards like sashimi and nigiri with expertly sliced, premium grade, buttery fish that go beyond the run of the mill species of marine life.
"A Japanese restaurant has to do more than tempura and California rolls to make a name for itself"
But it’s chef-owner Jake Rand’s creative, modern line-up of small plates, poke and donburi that set this place apart. As good as the nigiri and sashimi are, the cooked items are a real standout, too. The pork belly with house made kimchi and soft yolk, seven-minute egg balances glorious fattiness of the pork with the refreshing tang of fermented cabbage. The seaweed salad features a mix of local and imported seaweeds with avocado and an electric yuzu vinaigrette. And the trumpet mushrooms with eggplant puree, micro vegetables and umami-dense soy-garlic butter will disappear seconds after hitting the table.
"It’s chef-owner Jake Rand’s creative, modern line-up of small plates, poke and donburi that set this place apart"
The well-curated beer, wine and sake list is exceptional as is the airy, industrial-chic dining room, intimate sushi bar and outdoor seating. Eating in the industrial chic, roll top door dining room is a treat, but you can also order a limited menu of Kosho to go from one of the Barlow’s many watering holes or take your meal over to a nearby bench around the grassy spot just outside.
Kosho has weathered a flood, wildfire evacuation and now the pandemic. It’s still standing because the food is consistently excellent and customers keep coming back. Lucky us.