Fish & Pussycat raises the bar for Kyiv's sushi restaurants
Even though the number of restaurants in Kyiv is continuing to grow rapidly, it can still be difficult to find a place that ticks all of the boxes: well-presented, tasty food, a great location and excellent service.
However, the recently opened Fish & Pussycat Sushi Bar, located on the capital’s busy, central Baseina Street, fits the bill.
Opened at the end of September, this is already a must-visit place for raw fish fans.
While surrounded by a number of other places to eat, Fish &Pussycat stands out with its huge awning with the word “sush.”
For those wondering why there’s no final letter “i” — apparently, the restaurant's owners wanted it to stand out amid multiple "sushi" signs on Kyiv's streets.
Another thing: at first sight it’s difficult to see the name of the restaurant, as it is written in small, white letters underneath an inscription on the glass entrance door that exhorts visitors to “Follow your Fishes.”
As for the name of the venue, there is, disappointingly, no particularly interesting story behind it: According to the restaurant’s staff “there’s ‘fish’ because we serve it, and ‘pussycat’ because all people like cats.”
Additionally, Fish & Pussycat’s chefs are dressed up in uniforms with pictures of cats on them.
The décor in the restaurant is retro-style and intricate and also echoes the venue’s name: There’s a mirror wall decorated with a sign reading “catch me if you cat,” and a wooden table in the form of a surfboard.
The two halls of the restaurant feature a mix of old-fashioned wooden furniture with neon lights, iron chandeliers and mirrors, while the wall-sized front windows offer a view of Kyiv’s busy Baseina Street.
Even though the place is new and located in the downtown area, there was no trouble getting a table for two on a Saturday night. The waiters were extremely welcoming, and free bottles of still water stood on each table for visitors — a good sign in Kyiv, where restaurants don’t usually offer such freebies.
As for the food, waiters advise starting with traditional Hawaiian poke (raw fish) kinoa, with tuna and egg — which is a good choice for people on a diet and for lovers of healthy food — four juicy slices of raw tuna, mixed with kinoa, avocado, green beans, cherry tomatoes and a cut boiled egg, all for Hr 175.
Poke kinoa is also included on Fish & Pussycat’s breakfast menu, served from Monday to Friday, 9 a .m. –12 p.m., and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends.
It’s not all fish either: another delicious must-try on Fish & Pussycat’s menu is duck with spiced apples and kale for Hr 272. Around 10 pieces of tender duck breast, served with sweet mango-flavored sauce, and four savory pieces of spiced apples with a few leaves of kale is a real treat for poultry lovers.
All portions are moderately generous, served on medium-sized plates, but still big enough for two to share.
Like the “sushi” sign on the awning, the sushi menu is missing something — Fish & Pussycat serves only six basic types, with a few variations on each. However, this small quantity is compensated for by quality: the portions are big, with large, fresh, and tasty pieces of fish.
The restaurant claims to source its tuna from Miami and salmon from Scotland and Norway — but management won’t say how the fish is delivered to landlocked Kyiv.
Fans of hot and spicy food should opt for the crunchy sushi rolls with salmon and shrimps. While not overly spicy, the portions are relatively big, as are the rolls themselves. The waiters also bring a tiny teapot with soya sauce to accompany the sushi.
Fish & Pussycat’s sushi costs a bit more than average — for instance, the rolls go for Hr 395, except for the vegetarian sushi with tofu, mango and avocado, which costs Hr 295. The nigiri (four types, including tuna and salmon), are Hr 65 each, and the sashimi cost Hr 145.
As for the dessert menu, try the matcha crème brulee with caramel — a sweet crème brulee mousse with a bitter matcha tea flavoring, mixed with hard caramel in the form of a broken glass, and served on an old-fashioned silver plate.
On the drinks menu the restaurant offers a range of lemonades, hot drinks, beer, wines and spirits, such as traditional Japanese sake, whisky, and gin. The venue’s staff speak English and are happy to guide guests around the menu and offer helpful suggestions.
And despite calling itself a sushi bar, Fish & Pussycat also offers salmon steaks and filet of sea bass with creamed spinach, as well as the decidedly non-fishy striploin steak with beans and bone marrow.
Add to that the tempting choice of salads, soups and desserts, as well as the aforementioned breakfasts, and the Fish & Pussycat Sushi Bar has enough on offer to keep customers coming back for more, even after they’ve tried all the sushi.
Fish & Pussycat Sushi Bar.
5B Baseina St. +38066 712 6164 9 a.m.— 11 p.m.
The new restaurant Fish & Pussycat Sushi Bar serves six basic types of sushi, as well as seafood salads, steaks, soups, and desserts. The restaurant is located on Baseina Street in Kyiv. (Fish & Pussycat/Facebook)