Umai / Boston, MA

Umai is a small Victorian residency converted to a restaurant that literally puts you on display among the bustling shoppers on Boston’s upscale Newbury Street .

244 Newbury St
Boston, MA 02116



Umai is quite striking when you walk past it.  It’s very common to walk on Newbury St and see people eating on patios, and gorgeous outfits in display windows, but seeing diners in the display window… it’s intriguing to say the least.  Nothing really stands out from the exterior, especially since right below there’s a nail salon.  Again, the only thing really discernible on the outside are the diners on display.

I’m mixed with my thoughts on the food at Umai.  If I’m venturing to Newbury Street, I’m expecting upscale everything, and also willing to pay for all those bells and whistles that go along with my clothes, gadgets, and food.  So, just as I’m torn with my feelings of a CVS on Newbury St, I think it’s the best analogy I can give to my thoughts of Umai.  CVS is cheap and affordable, but two adjectives not really in my vocabulary when I walk through Newbury.  Umai provides average quality sushi at affordable prices for Newbury Street.  Don’t get me wrong, if this place was around the corner from where I live, I’d be racking up a punch card full of loyalty points.  But alas, it’s on Newbury St, where I’m looking for higher quality options and willing to spend for it.

The deluxe lunch combo I had there was a great value.  Solid nigiri and spot on spicy tuna roll.  The designer rolls… while I am adventurous, they didn’t really do it for me.  The rice wasn’t the greatest, but it was by no means bad.  Here are some of the rolls I tried:

  • Mango RollMango, Salmon, Cream Cheese, and Avocado
    • Tough to be sold on as I’m not a huge fan of cream cheese in my rolls, but this go around it wasn’t half bad.  A very pretty and colorful roll though.
  • Teriyaki Chicken RollBroiled Chicken and Lettuce with Teriyaki Sauce
    • Another not so wise, but adventurous choice by me.  It’s tough to sell me on chicken in my rolls as well.  I can at least say that the teriyaki sauce was favorable, I don’t think I can give objective feedback about the chicken though.  The sauce was slightly excessive on the roll for me.  By the time I started on this roll, the amount of teriyaki sauce on the roll, mainly the rice, messed up the composition of the roll.
  • Filet Mignon and Enoki Mushroom RollSeared filet Mignon and Enoki Mushroom, topped with Sesame Garlic Sauce
    • Who doesn’t love some filet mignon?  Well, I don’t know why chicken in rolls don’t work for me, but throw in some filet mignon or kobe beef in my rolls and I’m sold.  The filet mignon was slightly lacking in flavor, but the pairing with the enoki mushrooms not only made it attractive looking, but quite tasty as well.
  • Deluxe Sushi Lunch ComboNigiri Sushi (Chef’s Choice) and California Roll or Spicy Tuna Roll
    • First and foremost, a steal for the price of this lunch combo on Newbury Street if you ask me.  A very nice selection of Nigiri selected by the chef.  Spicy Tuna Rolls were spot on as well.




~Average quality sushi at reasonable prices on ‘display’  on Boston’s high-end Newbury Street.




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