Ninja Spinning Sushi Bar in Boca Raton: A Revolving Sushi Bar, Tatami Room, and More

ninja spinning sushi sushi go round.jpg
Tricia Woolfenden
Clever T-shirt slogans and a revolving bar of sushi await at Boca's Ninja Spinning Sushi Bar.
Sushi joints are a dime a dozen in South Florida, even in Boca Raton, where kosher delis and Italian restaurants seem to hold sway. It takes a bit of creative leverage to stand apart from the sea of places following the standard sushi-Thai model.

"Everything's so Americanized (in South Florida). We wanted to do something more authentic," said Lixii Sun, general manager for Ninja Spinning Sushi Bar, which opened late last year in Boca Raton.

See also:
- Now Hiring Ninjas: South Florida Restaurant Jobs Available at New Spots
- Jiro Dreams of Sushi
- Sushi-Thai in South Florida: An Americanized Throwback

ninja spinning japanese bagel roll.jpg
via Ninja Spinning Sushi Bar's Facebook
Ninja's version of a Japanese bagel roll.
The centerpiece for the business is a sushi bar encircled by a revolving kaiten zushi "conveyor belt" of floating dishes. Sushi rolls, sashimi, dim sum, and small bites float by on little boats and diners grab whatever they fancy. The cost is calculated using a color-coded system of plates (red plates are $4, yellow plates are $7, and so on) and the staff maintains freshness by dumping any unsold dishes every 20 minutes.

The concept, based on a Japanese fast-food model, is popular in California and New York, but has yet to make a wave in South Florida.

"We're offering a modern, sexy twist to the Japanese fast food approach," Sun said.

If the team behind Ninja seems familiar, it's because they also own Yakitori Sake House (271 SE Mizner Blvd.), located in Royal Palm Place, just a stone's throw from Ninja. That restaurant is equipped with a traditional yakitori grill, sushi bar, and a sake bar. Sun said the two concepts are different enough that they won't cannibalize one another's business. Where Yakitori is more upscale and traditional, Ninja offers a cheeky take on dining out with a "lower price point."

ninja spinning sushi conveyor belt.jpg
Tricia Woolfenden
Color-coded plates -- seen on the wall in the background -- denote price.


Location Info

Ninja Spinning Sushi Bar

41 E. Palmetto Park Road, Boca Raton, FL

Category: Restaurant


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3 comments
dccarshopper
dccarshopper

The worst birthday experience ever!

 Horrible. It was my birthday, we called ahead early to ask if we needed a reservation. They said its dead on sundays. We went in, it was completely slammed. After waiting for a table for 4 at the sushi counter, we were overlooked by staff to other customers who arrived later than us. We asked at least 4 different waiters and wait staff 27 times each for water, sake, utensils, sake cups ect. I got the excuse we are not the ones who take the orders about 4 different times. I know the service in south florida is horrible but this is the worst service I have ever had. The sushi was good, but at times the cooks were waiting until all the garbage no one wanted to eat was picked off the boats until replacing or putting new sushi. I felt like 90% of the sushi were shrimp tempura rolls with cream cheese. To top it off giving the sushi a 4 for taste, I got sick the next day as I am writing this review so now I give them a 1. Talk about explosive diarrhea. I give them 1 star. Completely unorganized. they need a manager to manage wait staff who have no idea what is going on. To top it off after we were a bout to leave the table we were finally asked if we needed more water. This was the first time any of the staff asked us anything. We were not once asked by a waiter or staff if we needed anything the entire time from when we walked in the door, sat down, and ate. We asked for plates, cups, utensils, only to get them 45 minutes later after we already ate our meal. What is the point? We asked 27 times previously and had to make our own plates and they never brought any soy sauce plates, napkins, or utensils the entire time we ate. What a horrible birithday experience. I will never go here again. And in the end I got sick as a dog today. I thought the sushi was good, but it made me sick. What a waste of time. The atmosphere is nice, if you like trendy, cool looking and horrible staff and unorganization. We generally tip over 20% in most cases. A minimum of 15%. If it were me who paid the bill, I wouldn't tip this place. And I have never not left a tip. Worst birthday experience of my life. One thing I can't stand is when a place opens that isn't ready to open. Don't open the doors if your not ready to open. That is completely unprofessional. This is why many restaurants go out of business. The perfect example is Ninja Sushi. I will warn all against going here. The only good thing going for this place is a cool atmosphere that pretty much gets ruined after the 5th time you ask who you think is a server to get you anything. It was so bad, the bus boys were bringing me the water the waiter wouldnt' bring. Also they have a full bar, but there isn't a bar tender so they can't make you drinks. WOW!!!!!!!!!!! In the end, it all comes down to horrible management. The guy who owns this place should close his doors now while hes ahead. When I walked in the back entrance and smiled at one of the employees wearing a ninja tshirt. He gave me this eat sh#t and die look. That already threw out a red flag before I walked in the door. But it was my bday and I was in the mood for sushi.We were reluctant to order anything else because we thought it would take another hour to get dessert so we went to MIzner and ate some icecream

freakerdude
freakerdude

This place sounds and looks really cool but I am not sure if the Boca clientele is ready for this. The recent additions of Kapow, Rebel House, and even the Mexican cover enough coolness territory.

triciawoolfenden
triciawoolfenden

@freakerdude I don't know if Boca could ever really shake its stuffy reputation (or if it deserves to at this point) but the success of Kapow and Rebel House show that as long as the food/drinks are good, the audience here will venture beyond the norm.  

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