Along with a revamped interior and exterior that includes salvaged wood and upgraded kitchen equipment, AKEMI features an updated menu spotlighting fresh ingredients and well-crafted flavors while retaining customer classics such as our sushi rolls.
AKEMI is the new name we bestow upon the beauty that is good food with good people in a good place.
One of our "go to" places to eat. We are regulars and fans of Akemi. However, I do have one complaint..... please nix the live music on Fridays. It's out of keeping with the general ambiance and way too loud for intimate conversation. If you must have music then it should be acoustic only.
the service is usually great but maybe this night there were down an employee but they didn't pay very good attention. the food was its usual deliciousness. this restaurant is one of my favorite go to places.
Service is usually a bit slow. Almost always need to ask for more water and tea rather than approached for service.
Akemi is so yummy. Warm kale, hamachi kama, all the rolls + jazz guitar last sat. Perf. Thanks Akemi!
Good food, fresh ingredients and well put together. Service staff were friendly and efficient even though it was busy.
Food is excellent but the service is terrible. Had to ask three times for water and two for a fork. Wine takes forever and the appetizer came with the main course. Go for the food but be prepared to be frustrated with the service.
Akemi has a sophisticated, handsome DR. The cooked food, such as tempura and other cooked dishes, have been above average. The rolls and sashimi were average, however -- not bad, but not quite top-tier. Akemi has some advantages for me. I really like their cooked food, which is varied and generally well executed. But the rolls could use an upgrade in sashimi quality. The décor is great and the service is very good; but you can't eat either one. It would be nice to see some emphasis on sustainability, too?
Ate at the sushi bar rather than take table for two. Basic sushi was decent. Rolls such soft shell crab were presented in an elegant manner. The house saki was quite acceptable.
We love this place. It's our go-to whenever we're near Berkeley or Albany. If I had to change anything it would be to include black iced tea as a beverage, and to add the karaage chicken to the lunch menu.
Servers were slow and not attentive, had to flag down servers several times just for the basics.
Excellent Japanese food and very good sushi. We have eaten many times and are never disappointed
Akemi is actually a lovely place, but spotty service. We wound up in the 'invisible' zone, appetizer came after the entree was served, didn't see our server for a loooong time...... which was too bad because the food was pretty good. Hoping this was a one off.
Akemi is my favorite on Solano. If you like Janpanese food, you can’t go wrong.
Food’s good but not very traditional Japanese fare. The service is not great - nice but not efficient and rather a long wait between dishes. Overall a pleasant dining experience but not a stand out
Excellent food and service always seems to be about one person slow. Tempura, veggie king and Alaska are our favorites
Great Time! Hidden gem on Solano Avenue.
Food was great. Service was poor: staff was inattentive and it took forever to get everything. Great spot for takeout.
Celebrated my grandma’s bday here. The food was great, but I felt the service was kind of lacking. While our server was attentive, she seemed almost uncomfortable and was very quiet. Overall we had a great experience though and loved that we had our own little section separate from the rest of the restaurant.
We like Akemi enough to keep coming back for the sushi. But service is not their strong point. And it's very annoying that they seem to completely ignore the reservations we make. We had a reservation for 6:30 pm this last Friday, with a specific request for 2 seats at the sushi bar. We walked in at 6:30, the sushi bar was full, and when we mentioned we had reservations for 2 at the sushi bar they did not seem to care at all. This has happened before, so it's not a new problem. It's as if they do not regard reservations as a priority. Do they even look at the reservations systems? We also don't feel very welcome here, there's no warmth or camaraderie with the sushi chefs or the servers. We may be looking for a new place where we can feel more welcome and get a sense that we are part of a neighborhood experience.
The chicken on the bento box @ $16 was so dry it was almost inedible. I usually like this restaurant and have gone here often, but this meal was a total loss. REcommendation: If you're coming to this restaurant, order the Chicken teriyaki or any chicken dish that uses dark meat, because the white meat is inedible without a sauce.
Simple, beautiful, and delectably delicious! Elegant oasis from the hustle and bustle of Solano Avenue. The Akemi roll is a definite must-try!
We were very pleased with our experience of dining at Akemi. We had a business dinner for 20 people. The reservation process through Opentable was quick and clear and the confirmation and follow up messages were appropriate. Upon arrival our table was ready and it was a please to be in a separate area from the main restaurant. The service was very professional and fast, and the food was excellent. We hope to have more opportunities to come back.
The food is always just terrific and they are very kind as they serve you. The only real issue is that the service is very slow and often erratic, with servers taking a long time between check ins and sometimes for getting an item if you are in a larger party of say 5 to 6 people. The environment is very nice, warm, clean but the sound of the room is very noisy. With older family members, they will have a hard time hearing anyone. I love their food and the prices are reasonable for good Japanese food.
Had a great time at this place, and the food was yummy. There was even a jazz guitarist.
The food was fresh and tasty and atmosphere lovely. Our waitstaff was kind but a little not present at times. No matter, it was good, and we’ll be back for sure.
Nice place and I would go again. Excellent food. I wish we had a place like this in my neighborhood. The service was a tad sloppy, but overall OK.
Our go to Japanese restaurant. The best gyoza! Love the tonkatsu ramen and sushi rolls are consistently excellent. Fun to try the sake flight but we prefer the hot sake, good value.
Food is always good, but service is sketchy, esp when you want the bill!
big fan of akemi, but this was my worst experience there. i entertained clients. the spicy edamame was overcooked. we ordered 4 sushi rolls and 2 sirloin combo plates. Sadly, all were served at the same time. soy sauce container was empty and took a while to get filled and brought us very small amount of wasabi. had to ask for more and server was very slow in supplying.
Fresh, well prepared, quiet place we go to on date night.
And we are never disappointed.
I love my nigiri and Sapporo my other half loves the rolls.
Amazing sushi... not-so-amazing service. We waited 10+ minutes to get water. The sushi came out very quickly... and was so good it was eaten within 10 minutes. However, it's definitely not cheap. If the sushi wasn't so good, I would not recommend this restaurant due to lack of superior service for the value it costs to eat here.
Akemi is one of my favorite restaurants in Berkeley and there are lots of good ones. The food and service are great. The wine list isn’t huge but the wines are good and well-priced. The interior is very zen. We love it!
We love Akemi and eat there often. My husband loves the Sushi and I love the brussell sprouts and steak.
Akemi was absolutely delicious. The sushi was fantastic and the live jazz music created a really wonderful ambiance. However, we had a reservation and waited to be sat for 15 minutes while people without reservations sat before us. It also took another 15 minutes for someone to even greet our table. Then it took quite a long time for our food to come out. So the service overall was pretty slow. But the rest of the experience was good and the rolls we ordered were amazing. I would definitely recommend checking it out, but only if you have an hour and a half to spare.
This restaurant has the most horrible serv9ice i have ever experienced. Our dining group of 7 people were horrified when only 4 diners got food and 3 diners never did.
I went to kitchen and was told the woner was not working. We waited forever to get anyone's attention. Our waitress has simply disappeared, never to be seen again.
Dont eat here unless you are interested in getting an ulcer.
There are many Japanese placves in berkeley that respect their patron a lot more. We were treated horribly.
Never go back again.
This is my sister and I's go to sushi place. Always consistently good sushi and love the decor.
They accommodated our party running 15 minutes late to our reservation. Food was good and came out quickly. They don't check in on your table frequently, but when you wave them down they are very nice. This was our 2nd Friday in a row eating here - would definitely recommend to a friend.
The server was really nice, but the kitchen was backed up, and there was a big lag between courses. The sushi was great, but the lobster in the ramen as well as the edamame were overcooked. And was there coconut milk in the ramen? Whatever it was was really strange for ramen and should have been explained on the menu. Plus, we asked for tofu as a replacement for eggs in of our dishes but ended up with extra eggs and no tofu. It was an evening of snafus. Given the cost, I don't see going back. This place has gone downhill.
Delicious Japanese cuisine. Dragon roll and rainbow roll were lovely and always enjoyu their chicken teriyaki entree. Place is cold so heat should be on when it is cold outside. Also dont know why I did not get points for this rez as i have before.
This was our first time dinning at Akemi. As for the food - 4+ stars. Dragon roll - excellent. Tempura - excellent. Ramen dish - good. We ordered the fat back ramen and it was tasty just not sure we would order this again. The server #77 was good right up until she decided to stop serving our table. No water refill. No asking if we would like desert or perhaps more sake. Simply disappeared from our table and was at the front desk doing something then at the back of the restaurant doing something else.... The question is why come back to Akemi when service at so many other restaurants in the area is on point. No sure we will. Perhaps server #77 had a bad night. Perhaps they had other responsibilities (seemed this way) which extended beyond our table. Unfortunate. My only other comment was there was live music which was not too loud and pleasant. I'm not sure how playing 'The Girl from Ipanema" and other similar songs fits a Japanese restaurant but what the heck... right?