The 98 Pound Restaurant: Cheap Sushi and More!

 Header photo by Denis Jeong 

I’ve been told that the whole Chinese all-you-can-eat buffet phenomenom has run its course, and that the next big trend for Chinese restaurateurs is sushi — the profit margins are better. A lot of Chinese buffets already offer a few varieties of sushi, but the new 98 Pounds Restaurant at 98th and 35W in Bloomington actually combines the concepts.

The steam tables offer a big selection of the usual Chinese buffet
staples – General Tso’s chicken, shrimp in coconut sauce, stir-fried beef with
mushrooms, teriyaki chicken, fried rice, egg rolls, potstickers, hot and sour
soup, tempura shrimp, etc. etc. etc. There’s plenty of fried food, and the
fried shrimp and tempura shrimp are heavy on breading light on shrimp, but
overall, I’d rate the hot buffet items as better-than-average.

But the real novelty here is the cold buffet of
all-you-can-eat sushi.

sushi plate

There were about 15 different varieties of sushi on offer,
nearly all of the maki (roll) variety: spicy tuna roll, crab roll, cream cheese
roll, California roll. Real sushi lovers will not be impressed – there’s very
little raw fish, or any other costly ingredients, in the sushi, but plenty of
imitation crab. Still, the sushi actually was tasty, and you can’t beat the
price – $7.99 for lunch, $11.49 for dinner. I’m told that the dinner buffet
offers a bigger selection of seafood items, including crab legs and mussels.

98 Pounds Restaurant, 824 W. 98th St., Bloomington, 952-881-1088.