Venturing to the east, Explorer’s Chris Flora and I found ourselves at RA Sushi Bar Restaurant for our monthly Sippin’ Social.

Seating ourselves in a corner table in the bar, we were quickly greeted by our server with some suggestions off the happy hour menu. 

After the descriptions of the many drink items listed on the happy hour menu, and although I liked pronouncing the Shisho Naughty, I went with the Dragon Bite ($6.75). The drink, which is granished with a strawberry and a lemon, is made with Bacardi Dragonberry, strawberry puree, lemon juice, Japanese yuzu (which is a Japanese lemon), and a splash of soda. 

The drink was a little more tart than I was expecting. I figured with the red tint and the strawberry puree, it would have a stronger berry flavor. But that is not to say I was disappointed. The lemon and the strawberry melded together beautifully and it didn’t take long for this glass to be filled with nothing more than ice.

Chris chose the Blushing Geisha ($6.75) for his first drink. Put together with lemonade mixed with Skyy Raspberry vodka, Chambord, fresh lemon sour, and a splash of soda, he found the drink to be tasty, refreshing, and said it was a must-try.

The small bar area started to fill up as more people started to come in and find an open seat. Once the sun set, the outside seemed to be a nice location to sit, and will be a coveted spot for sure in the coming months as the temperature begin to dip and the desert progresses into Fall.

For our meal, we took our server’s recommendation and went with the Crispy Onion Albacore Tapas ($5.75) and our own choice of the Crispy Spicy Tuna ($6.75).

The tapas came out first. The dish of seared albacore with garlic ponzu sauce, crispy onions and wontons; served with organic micro greens was beautifully plated and disappeared quickly. The fish had a wonderful tart flavor, and the crunchy onions and crisp greens balanced out the soft tuna. 

The Crispy Spicy Tuna came out a short time later. At first glance, the spice tuna, which was topped with some cilantro and a sliver of jalapeño, looked to be sitting on a tater tot. The base is actually a cube of crispy sesame rice. The pieces were then sitting on a drizzling of soy chili sauce. They were delicious and as was par for the course that night, they were consumed and disappeared way too quickly.

Wanting a drink closer to my usual, I ordered a Kirin beer  ($7.75) that just so happened to come with some hot sake, which was shared. The beer tasted crisp and refreshing, like most Japanese beers, which I used to cut the slight burn from the sake.

Chris stuck to the cocktail menu and ordered the Strawberry Saketini ($7.75), which is made with Absolut Citron, Nigori sake, strawberry puree and lemon juice. 

He said it was a freshing, sweet, iced tropical drink with a strong hint of sake. Those who do not like sake will probably find the sake overpowering. For others, the small serving works well - not too sweet to handle, very fruity flavored and tasty.

One of the reasons we believe the bar filled up so quickly is because the happy hour at RA is one of the largest and longest we’ve come across during our monthly outings. The happy hour is from 3 to 7 p.m., and has 38 drinks and cocktails broken up into five different price ranges. The cheapest drinks are $3.75, and they go up by $1, each tier, to $7.75.

The food menu is just as vast with 33 different items to choose from ranging from edamame for $2.75 to the Viva Las Vegas Roll for $7.75 six tiers up.

RA is a fantastic location for happy hour, and with it’s diverse menu, allows for people to come again and again. I know I’ll return to try RA’s Shisho Naughty.

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