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KUSHI – Japanese Kitchen & Bar

4_half star rating 38 reviews

Telephone 09 368 4000

22A Durham St West
In front of City Life Hotel
Auckland Central
Auckland City

Japanese, A La Carte, Asian, Sushi
Lunch 11:30am - 2:30pm
Mon - Sun 5:30pm - late
Fri 5pm - late
Provided by business


Please come and enjoy our great atmosphere & great food. Kushi Japanese Kitchen & Bar officially opened on 2nd Dec 2011, serving authentic Japanese cuisine including sushi, Yakitori, Tepanyaki, Sashimi and more.


Photo of KUSHI – Japanese Kitchen & Bar
Kushi Yaki yummy yummy
Scotch Fillet Steak
Tempura Moriawase (Combination)

More Information

Restaurants, Bar & Brasseries, Bistros
Free On-Street, Pay & Display
Price Range:
Spendy, $25 - $35
Smart casual
Good For Groups:
Good For Children:
Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cocktails
Wheelchair Accessible:
Takes Reservations:
Dietary Restrictions:
Vegetarian, Halal
Meals Served:
Dessert, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night
Payment Types:
EFTPOS, Visa, MasterCard, AMEX
Seating For:

Reviews for KUSHI – Japanese Kitchen & Bar

5 star rating
by ohayo
17th July 2014

Ive been there couple of times with friend. The atmosphere was good, and the staff are very friendly, feel relax in this restaurant! sashimi always quite fresh, the cooking way of karaage is quite special and nice.The special experience for me was a drum show during the meal. Was shocked for their awesome performance. Should have asked more friends to come to see the show later on! it’s worth to come to enjoy the nice food in a Japanese culture based atmosphere. Highly recommend Japanese restaurant in city centre.

5 star rating
by Adalaide K.
14th June 2014

Excellent restaurant.. Friendly service, amazing atmosphere, the food is delicious and great value for your money.. Dined here last night with a few friends and had a really great time.. The entertainment was an added bonus which was awesome.. Thoroughly enjoyed ourselves here..

5 star rating
by Gina d.
18th May 2014

Went here for the first time last night after reading lots of good reviews for it on here. We booked in for 6.30 but were running late so I rung about 20 mins before to push our booking to 6.45 which was no problem at all. Got there and was really taken by the awesome interior design! The restaurant had a really nice atmosphere and loved that we were seated in a booth that is quite private from other diners. The food was excellent, everything tasted incredibly fresh including all of the seafood. I went there expecting smaller sized dishes but was surprised at how much food we actually got. My partner and I both ordered 3 dishes each and weren’t able to finish everything. They also had some great dinner deals going. Service was friendly and polite and food was served efficiently. Would definitely recommend especially if you are looking for somewhere to go as a couple.

5 star rating
by Mike A.
24th April 2014

Been here a couple of times now, and starting to get the hang of the menu.
Food is delicious, exotic and beautifully presented. It has the added advantage of being pretty healthy in terms of ingredients and preparation. The staff are friendly and helpful, and speed of service was reasonable.
We’ve ordered a lot of dishes over our visits, and never had a bad experience. The environment is classy, and even better, you can get a table on a Friday night. The drums are an added feature.
Will definitely be back.

4 star rating
by Jun K.
22nd April 2014

The food and service is great. I have brought my friends three times and my family once to this restaurant, all of whom were first visitors. Expectantly they all loved the food and the atmosphere. Of the four visits, I used the entertainment vouchers which they accepted without any hassle. Although the discounts did not apply to food that were already on special, this was understandable as they were quite heavily discounted. I would definitely recommend this place!

4 star rating
by Char & Ricky P.
6th March 2014

Go there for a lot of work lunches, the food is always good and served quickly. Staff are great and make us feel really welcome every time my work crew visits. The $10 lunch special is a good option especially if you order the spicy chicken.

4 star rating
by CC
8th November 2013

Cut above the rest, does towers of beer too in case the nearby BlueStone Room is overcrowded. Good place for a big group to have dinner with beers after. Service is attentive, courteous, and efficient!

4 star rating
by Kate S.
1st October 2013

I had a delicious dinner out with my bestie at Kushi on a Saturday night.
The waitresses were really friendly and offered my friend so many alternatives when her fav wine wasn’t available.
The food was delicious – especially the agedashi tofu… so flavoursome and a hint of something I couldn’t quite put my finger on, but very tasty.
Great location in the center of the city with really reasonable parking just opposite.
An all round great dining experience!

4 star rating
by Liz W.
1st October 2013

Delicious Japanese food, in a really great setting.
We loved the option of booth-seating – because it makes it really private – we actually couldn’t see any other diners from our secluded space. Loved it!

We bought a variety of different dishes and shared them. The standout delicious things for me included the sweet potato tempura dipped in delicious sauce; the beautiful green spinach with ‘goma’ (I had to look it up on my phone to find out what goma was) which was very yummy; and my perennial favourite Agedashi Tofu (a super thin layer of something a little crisp, not quite a batter, not quite tempura…) on the outside; with a bit of spring onion and some flakey pieces of mystery-something on the top; and of course the silky tofu, flavoured by the salty delicious sauce that the pieces were sitting in.

I also thoroughly enjoyed the Teriyaki Salmon Set. Everything delicious and fresh and it should be.

Service at Kushi was very good, once we were seated. Room for improvement, could be that somehow this restaurant needs to find a way for kitchen / front of house team to be made instantly aware when people have arrived through the door… so they can shout out that cool Japanese greeting that some places do (maybe mirrors or cameras could fix the problem that staff can’t see people walking in around the corner?). When I walked in, staff were busy elsewhere, and I felt very lost … it took a full 3 minutes of standing about feeling out-of-place for someone to come and welcome me!

Once seated, our two waitresses were exceptional, and really provided outstanding service.
Thank you! It was a really lovely evening.

3 star rating
by Katie
21st July 2013

Food and setting very nice but the service very lacking. I made a booking for lunchtime midweek for 9 and had to ask twice for enough menus for for everyone and twice for someone to take a drink order. Although food and ambience was nice, the service left a LOT to be desired.

5 star rating
by Stace M.
10th July 2013

Kushi is our fav Japanese Restaurant ever! The atmosphere and people are fantastic and the food is always amazing! And the pricing is very reasonable! We love coming in often for a delicious meal. Would highly recommend this place!

5 star rating
by Graham B.
5th July 2013

This was another amazing find in Auckland. Out of all of the Japanese restaurants that I searched through I’m glad that I chose Kushi.

From the young lady welcoming me to their restaurant, the experience was a good one. The 25 piece sashimi was A) huge and B) beautiful, not only in presentation but taste.

The waiter was very attentive and also asked whether I wanted my sake re-heating once my main came out.

Overall a very nice, well presented restaurant and yes, I will certainly go there again. They also have some very good offers on – especially if there are two people sharing meals.

5 star rating
by Josie A.
5th June 2013

Delicious Japanese food, great ambience, good prices and if you are lucky you get an amazing drum performance. Oh yes, great service as well. Been there at least 10 times this year so far.
It is convenient that it is just across the road from where I live.

5 star rating
by Annie B.
5th June 2013

Absolutely love this place! Is one of my favorite places in the city for lunch, and an amazing Japanese place! Service is fantastic – the staff are so friendly & the decor is great. Would definitely recommend it to others & quite regularly have!

5 star rating
by Aileen C.
5th June 2013

Delicious Japanese food. Lovely friendly service. Conveniently located in Auckland CBD. Affordable prices especially at lunch time. Great atmosphere for group dinners or romantic date dinners. A really fun surprise drumming performance at 7:30pm on Friday and Saturday nights I think. Really awesome discounted birthday special thank you.

I have been twice for lunch with 1 other person and dinner with 1 person and a group dinner with 10 people.

4 star rating
by Rafael I.
5th June 2013

-Nice restaurant
-Nice Staff and service
-We got great deals on my wife’s and friends birthday
-Parking deal as well
-Great food! Shabu shabu is the best!
But karaage chicken has a modern twist with rice puffs, would prefer without it and some the crispy fried skin.

Recommend to all!

5 star rating
by Carine C.
15th April 2013

I highly recommend this place that we discovered with my husband few month ago (almost when they opened the place). First the atmosphere of the restaurant is beautiful, brand new, a bit dark and intimate to have a dinner as a couple. Then, the food is awesome really different to other Japanese restaurants. I hate going to a restaurant which does not surprise me ! Here you will be amazed by the different way they prepare dishes. Our favourite dishes are the chicken Karaage (crusty breadcrumb with puffy rice I guess and nice tartare sauce to go with it, camembert skewer and beef tataki. Finally, the team is really polite, smiling and will do anything to make your dinner perfect.

5 star rating
by Kiki B.
28th March 2013

One of the best Japanese restaurants I have been to in Auckland. Modern interior and very helpful staff.

Fantastic food and service!

They do a brilliant karage chicken with rice bubbles!

Highly recommended!

5 star rating
by Tony M.
12th March 2013

Large sliecs of Sashimi, if you are a sashimi fan, do try the large sashimi plater :)

Went yesterday and they also had live drum band playing which was very entertaining to watch while dining.

The tatakis here are really nice, whether it be beef or tuna. Really refreshing taste.

Service: 5/5
Wait time: 4/5
Environment: 5/5
Food Quality and taste: 4/5
Price range: $40+ pp

4 star rating
by Felicity
8th February 2013

Happen to be looking for a place to dine one dec night, quite late on saturday evening,and stumbled across Kushi, we were starving so we just walked and they seated us pretty much straight away which was great, they were very friendly and quick on their feet. they took our orders and food came shortly after, presentation wise was 5stars, and the flavours were all there too. very much enjoyed our meals(bento boxes) they were a little pricier than some other Japanese restaurants we have been too, but the it was a bonus because we got 50% off my husbands meal, if it is the week of your birthday you can get 50% off your main.woohoo for us. the decor is fantastic and the toilets were spotless and so so nice, lighting and decor 2thumbs up. the music so so fantastic too, we asked where we could get our hands on those tracks it was so good.
the only down for me personally was that it was a little too dark in there, maybe they dimmed the lights down that night for some reason, but other than that, its a wonderful place to dine. 4.5 stars from me.:-)

Comment from Monty C. of KUSHI – Japanese Kitchen & Bar 15/07/2013   
Hi Felicity, Thank you for your comments :), Since reading…    More »
4 star rating
by Kat M.
30th January 2013

Went to Kushi with a friend of mine after buying a deal voucher.

5 star rating
by Monica C.
7th January 2013

I love coming to this place for some good Japanese food. It’s in a bit of a secret location but I recommend a go. Quite a large, spacious restaurant so lots of places to sit with a nice Japanese decour. Staff are friendly and explained any Japanese items we were unsure of, were also dressed in kimonos which was nice. Food is very good and well priced, came out quickly though you have to order a few things as the portions aren’t that big. I would recommend beef tataki and karage chicken as my favourite things but there is good variety on the menu!

5 star rating
by Frankie K.
4th January 2013

Another fantastic Japanese restaurant!
Service was flawless, I was warmly welcomed and served promptly. Food came out at excellent speed, and everything was delicious!
The atmosphere itself is very authentic, with excellent decor.
Great place to take someone to get there first taste of Japanese cuisine because everyone is so friendly and helpful, not to mention very clean.
I can’t fault this place at all. Wonderful experience!

5 star rating
by Wilma B.
13th December 2012

What a surprise when I walked in. Fab decor, great service, good music. I agree could be one of Auckland’s better Japanese restaurants. Waited a little longer than expected for my 2nd drink but hey I got to write this review in between.

4 star rating
by Allan F.
3rd December 2012

Very good, food is great. Portions are slightly small but it is expected.

5 star rating
by Kelly S.
18th November 2012

It was proved to be a very satisfactory night we spent in the japanese restaurant. The atmosphere is terrific and the staff is very friendly. The food we ordered is among the best quality we had in various jap restaurants. Overall good value for the money spent, would come back again!

5 star rating
by Courtney G.
1st November 2012


A girlfriend and I went here with a deal voucher. We were early for our table but they let us come in anyway. Service was great, very helpful especially helping us pick some different things to the usual. Food was awesome, super filing and fresh! The atmosphere was relaxed and welcoming too. Although I have heard about the drummers we didn’t see any, owell always next time!

Definately will be returning again!

4 star rating
by James
2nd October 2012

Tried this place with deal voucher. The food was very very good, but customer service a bit average.

4 star rating
by Serena
22nd August 2012

Lovely atmosphere and food :)

4 star rating
by Maria P.
14th August 2012

Good atmosphere, good food. Went there a while back with a deal voucher, staff were very friendly and attentive. I could not find a lot of vegetarian options on the dinner menu so they let me order from the lunch menu as well. Would definitely go back.

5 star rating
by Lou T.
25th July 2012

Saw this restaurant in the north shore times and decided to try it out. It definitely was not a waste of our time. was impressed with the bubbly staff and how they were attentive. Have been twice now for dinner and will look forward to attending again. The prices were what we expected. The drumming performance was a lovely surprise not what we expected but enjoying and was just as enjoying again the second time round. Love and recommend this restaurant to anyone who loves Japanese food or just looking to try something different. Keep up the amazing work guys!<3

5 star rating
by Marinka S.
12th April 2012



Food is typical Japanese and yes there are no surprises about it. It is what you expect and deserve to get. The prices are ok as well taking the fact that is CBD restaurant. We were there three times already and will keep coming back. First time we were there it was day after they opened and I tell you the staff and service was implacable and personal.

We just love this place, simple, nice, consistent !!! Way to go guys.

3 star rating
by Jennifer H.
3rd April 2012

Stumbled across this while looking for somewhere to eat (was originally going to BBQ King – then we saw this place). An amazing decor, lovely staff members – all so vibrant and lively. Bit disappointing they’re actually Korean, but the food still tasted pretty good. A bit over-priced for the amount of food you get during their dinner session. It’s worth a try as the food isn’t too bad and the atmosphere and staff are great ^^

Comment from Monty C. of KUSHI – Japanese Kitchen & Bar 17/07/2013   
Hi Jennifer, Thank you for your comments we appreciate all…    More »
5 star rating
by Kevin S.
18th January 2012

I suggest you go here to have a lunch or diner. They made my wife, daughter feel special. the service and food was excellent. the decore outstanding. After just coming back from a holiday in Tokyo I felt I was there for the day – well done

4 star rating
by Oliver
12th January 2012

Food was exceptional, and we were greeted warmly when we arrived. We had a deal voucher and unlike some other restaurants we have eaten with vouchers before this was not a problem for them and we were still treated well. Only complaint was with the waiting service, very slow to get any drinks and no follow up for drinks service. We ended up going up to the bar ourselves. If they can sort the service out then this will be a 5 star … some of the best Japanese food I have eaten in NZ.

3 star rating
by Ben
12th January 2012

Visited on a relatively quiet Friday night and ordered a variety from the menu. The food came out relatively quickly – I was a big fan of the teriyaki chicken and tempura – beautiful and crispy. The salads were delicious, albiet slightly overdressed. I guess the one complaint I had was with the service – while the waiters were very polite, drinks service was very slow and they weren’t attentive – we had to visit the bar on more than one occasion to order more drinks. I think with some fine tuning this could be one of the best Japanese places in town.

Comment from Monty C. of KUSHI – Japanese Kitchen & Bar 18/03/2013   
Hi Ben S. Thank you for your comment, At Kushi we strive for…    More »
5 star rating
by Alex M.
2nd January 2012

We stumbled across Kushi on our way to CityLife hotel on New Years Eve, when we walked in we were greeted warmly straight away and asked if we had a reservation – by looking at their book they were going to have a busy night yet they found us a unreserved table and promptly brought our drinks and food came out within 15 minutes of placing our order
The rear tuna was amazing! as was the noodle dish we had and my friend had the chicken which looked as though it had cripsy noodles inside the deep fried batter – he loved. Could have done dessert as well as they looked very good but we were in a hurry.

Great $$ wise also. Good wine list as well

I will be going back again as I am a huge fan of Nishiki in Freemans Bay and this restaurant gives it a good run for its money.

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