Hi, I'm Lu!

A PhD Student at University of Chicago who loves discovering the world and trying new eats! Hope you enjoy!

Roka Akor

Roka Akor

Crispy prawn and chirashi maki
Crispy prawn and chirashi maki

We hardly ever go out for dinner during the popular Restaurant Week because restaurants are very crowded, the menus are usually not very innovative, and we are often too enticed by items on the regular menu. But I am so glad we decided to head over to Roka Akor (Chicago location), the Asian fusion restaurant that I've been wanting to make it to for way too long.

I started with a crispy prawn and chirashi maki, which had a perfect crunch when I bit into it. The chirashi topping each piece was also very fresh and came through with every bite! I would suggest pairing this maki with one of their delicious cocktails! But I must say that the Sochu Smash tasted much more like a citrus mojito than the mango Thai chili sochu that I had expected to dominate my palate.

Left: Shochu Smash - mango Thai chili shochu, orange and lemon wheels, fresh mint Right: Modern nigiri selection (front: tuna topped with caviar and a gold flake)
Left: Shochu Smash - mango Thai chili shochu, orange and lemon wheels, fresh mint Right: Modern nigiri selection (front: tuna topped with caviar and a gold flake)

When our waitress brought out the six-piece nigiri selection, my jaw dropped to some degree at how beautiful the plate looked. Each piece glistened under the slightly dimmed light, and I absolutely loved how they adorned each piece with something special, like the gold flake atop the tuna. The fish tasted very fresh, and I would highly suggest this for any nigiri lover (but this dish is not on the Restaurant Week menu)!

Left: Forest mushroom salad with truffle barley miso vinaigrette Right: Lamb cutlet with Korean spices
Left: Forest mushroom salad with truffle barley miso vinaigrette Right: Lamb cutlet with Korean spices

My husband ordered the mushroom salad off the Restaurant Week menu, and it certainly had an acidic punch! But what really surprised me was the fresh and crunchy lotus root, which I have never had raw before. It was certainly a healthy, vegetarian start before my lamb chop entree! I was literally grinning when I saw this plate of soy sauce rubbed lamb with a semi-spicy Korean sauce. I thoroughly enjoyed the tender, slightly sweet and gamey meat!

Grilled Chilean seabass with roasted butternut squash and peppercorn broth
Grilled Chilean seabass with roasted butternut squash and peppercorn broth

This sea bass was astonishing! The concentrated broth was extremely savory and complemented the sea bass nicely. And I honestly never thought butternut squash would go so well with fish!

Ube pot de creme with Bubu Arare tuile
Ube pot de creme with Bubu Arare tuile

I had no idea what we were about to get when we ordered the ube but was pleasantly surprised by this Crayola color bombed dessert, which actually wasn't very sweet. Ube is a purple yam, and Pastry Chef Jesse Divine really outdid himself with this ingredient! The dessert has the consistency of a panna cotta, which worked really nicely with the tart fruits and crispy tuile. I really wanted to lick the bowl clean...

Spiced hot chocolate with housemade green tea marshmallow
Spiced hot chocolate with housemade green tea marshmallow

This spiced hot chocolate was a lovely ending to the meal. Make sure you soak the green tea marshmallows in the hot chocolate and take a bite of the crunchy sesame chip with every sip! This dessert will definitely not disappoint!

Tips:

  1. Roka Akor is on TableSAVVY, where you pay $5 for the day-of reservation to receive 30% off your entire bill.
  2. Make a reservation on weekends - they get pretty crowded!
  3. This is the last week for Restaurant Week, so head there now! They also offer a $15 wine pairing.
Roka Akor on Urbanspoon
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