I had dinner at the Sushi Mio restaurant on the evening of 10/21/09. It is tucked away from Roswell Road, and wasn't very easy to find because it is in a strip mall hidden behind several buildings and a parking lot. It is the restaurant at the northern end of the strip mall next to Hilderbrand Drive.
When I eat at a sushi restaurant for the first time I always sit at the sushi bar to watch the chefs work and keep a close eye on the quality of the fish. For this purpose, the extra high chairs and low lap level sushi bar was adequate. However, these same extra high chairs and low level bar made for an awkward meal. I was constantly worried about something spilling on my clothes, even if it was a small drip from one of the rolls themselves. It was also uncomfortable on my back.
I initially ordered a spicy tuna cut roll and a "Sushi Mio #1" roll, as well as an order of yellowtail sushi. I immediately noticed that the sushi chef could not understand what I was saying and so I marked it with a pencil on the sushi order sheet and handed it to him. He huddled with the other chef working the bar and discussed my order, and came back and questioned me about the items I selected. I re-verified my order with him and he got to work. Meanwhile, I ordered drinks.
I like to have a hot sake and a cold beer with sushi. The waitress brought them out quickly and politely. I looked around the restaurant and it seemed clean, but was darkly lit. There were approximately 20 to 30 tables, and there were only 3 or 4 other parties in the restaurant. The ambiance could be improved by better decor, but I did enjoy the traditional Japanese music playing throughout the restaurant.
The chef completed my order, and set the rolls out for me. The fish in each roll was of good quality, but the rice was quite dry. It seemed like it might not have been very fresh, or perhaps they didn't use the right amount of vinegar during preparation. The rice wasn't horrible or anything, but it really did deter from the flavor of the rolls. Concerning the "Sushi Mio #1" roll, I thought that the flavors were a complete mismatch and almost sent it back. Even though it was properly made as it was described on the menu, the flavor of the cream cheese really threw the roll off and I had to chase each piece with a swig of beer to wash it down.
Lastly, I wanted to place a custom order for a spicy octopus hand roll because I had been craving it all day. Placing the order was really frustrating, and they eventually had four people speaking with me about it to understand what a spicy octopus hand roll is. To me, this is such a simply request, and my only emphasis was to please cut the octopus into very small pieces because it is easier to chew that way. All of this really seemed to throw them for a loop which surprised me because at other sushi restaurants this is really a basic request. It took several minutes to work through this order, and I noticed that even the wait staff were paying attention.
Finally the chef began making the hand roll, and as I was waiting one of the wait staff came up to me and began taunting and teasing me about my order. Apparently he got a real kick out of it. I didn't play along with him, and when he noticed I wasn't laughing he walked away giggling. Very awkward.
When the chef handed the custom hand roll over to me, it was simply a rough chop of octopus that had been stirred with Túóng Ót Sriracha sauce and rolled with some rice. Not a very good effort at all, and I know this because almost all sushi chefs want to make their hand rolls beautiful and tasty with their restaurant's special sauces, sesame seeds, Japanese mayonnaise, or sprouts. To me, this sushi chef's effort was a big fail.
At this point I just wanted to leave. I asked for my bill and it was brought to me quickly. The total amount was $45.21 without tip.
I would not return to Sushi Mio, and could not recommend it to anyone who is serious about their sushi. I did notice that they seemed to be doing a brisk takeout business, and have to think that it's because the locals don't care for the experience of dining in the restaurant either -- coupled with the fact that there didn't seem to be many other sushi restaurants in the Sandy Springs area to compete with.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC