UMAI Japanese Kitchen & Sushi

4.7
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527 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Japanese
At Umai, the experience is meant to be a series of sensations to be shared and lingered over, whether it’s a cozy meal for a few or a lively evening out. The interior of Umai has a modern-lofty feel with an artistic decor of Japanese mural on the wall. The dining room has natural earthy color, dark high-ceiling and hanging lights that makes the dinning elevated, warm and hip atmosphere, providing an intimate and fun dining experience for any occasion. At the sushi bar, our expert chefs work their magic, creating a dynamic and interactive dining experience where guests can savor either the sushi or the full menu. Umai's kitchen is a laboratory for innovation. The chefs integrate classic Japanese techniques with international flavors to create stunning, mouth-watering bites for an eclectic crowd. From seasonal exotic fish, to an excellent sake and wine list, Umai is a promising destination for all to enjoy and share.
What 527 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
82% of people would recommend it to a friend
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a
Louisville
5 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was recommended by the bellhop at Hotel Blake. He hit the mark. This was excellent! It’s a cozy place, and people are packed in. It is well worth the money. Can’t say enough great things.

JH
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience3

Nice everyday place, somewhat loud but good and efficient.

WS
Chicago
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall3food2service3ambience2

The roll isn’t tight.
Sukiyaki is too sweet, beef is not fresh. The beef for sukiyaki is frozen beef.
Not so good. Miso ramen tastes lightly.

JD
Chicago
20 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Service was excellent. Nice choices.

OT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Came here while visiting my sister and her boyfriend. Amazing place, classy atmosphere and best sushi I’ve had.

OT
Chicago
21 reviews
Dined on February 3, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food is always great

KT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Every time we try a different sushi restaurant, we end up disappointed we didn’t just go to Umai. We tried out Tanoshii a few blocks down the street and actually stopped, hooked a reso at Umai, left Tanoshii and went over to Umai. The quality, portions, and prices are just great at Umai. Portions literally twice the size for $4 cheaper per two prices of Nigiri- it’s a no brainer. If there was a way to win free Umai for life, I would be desperately trying.

B
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

It was a very nice experience ! The sushi was fresh and I like the miso soup and their house salad a lot. Normally many places I got served warm or room temperature miso soup but here they gave me a hot and delicious miso soup which I love a lot. And the dressing on the house salad was delicious... never had a tasty and creamy dressing like that in a Japanese restaurant. Overall it was a very nice dinner.

OT
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall3food2service4ambience4

It's the more American type of Japanese. If you have a taste for authentic Japanese food and atmosphere, you might be underwhelmed. I ordered Unagi Don, and I don't really need a decorative flower and 5 types of colorful pickles on it. All I want is hot rice + a decent amount of unagi, which was not quite the case. My friend ordered sushi and he says it's ok, but not outstanding.

GM
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Staf is friendly, helpful, the food is excellent and once you frequent 3 or 4 times the staff will know you making it a personal feel.

OT
New England
7 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our server, Ann, was great. She was very knowledgeable and made great recommendations. The rest of the staff was also nice, greeting us as we walked in and saying Thank You/good-bye when we left.

OT
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious food and excellent service.

AM
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2019
Overall3food2service3ambience2

One of our sushi rolls was made incorrectly. One of our cocktails was made incorrectly. One of the sushi rolls was pretty much inedible. The heat vent at our feet was blowing out such hot air that we could barely touch the seat or stand staying there to eat. The person next to me mentioned it to waitstaff and was told there was nothing they could do about it.

L
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on December 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Early dinner, the place was not crowded, service was great. Food, particularly the sushi was very fresh and beautifully presented. Tonkatsudon was tasty.

OT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great meal with excellent service. Mook was a terrific, conscientious waitress. Standouts included the takoyaki and beef with asparagus appetizers, as well as the katsudon bowl. Sushi was very good as well. We ended up opting to take home much of our main courses, allowing for dessert. The green tea créme brulée was surprising and delicious.

Nice vibe but both times I’ve been here it has been quite loud. Plan accordingly. Reservations are highly recommended to avoid long waits.

E
1 review
Dined on December 12, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

When we want Japanese we always go to Umai. Lately we have had to make reservations but that's no big deal. Consistently great and really not too expensive

OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

My server was excellent! She was upbeat and attentive and had great recommendations. I come here often for the ramen and love the place!

DS
Edinburgh
18 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Great food. Happy that we tried Umai. The sushi lovers in our group gobbled up their meal. I tried a shrimp tempura roll that had avocado pieces in it. Really enjoyed this Japanese fusion dish.

OT
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on November 30, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As reliably good food and fast service as ever.

KM
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience3

Just really wasn't impressed with the quality of sushi. I wouldn't recommend it. :(

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious sushi and ramen! The pork shoulder bbq melts in your mouth.

JL
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always, this place is amazing! Wonderful, friendly service and delicious food! The dynamite roll is our favorite!

JK
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing Japanese restaurant. A bit pricey, but worth it. Amazing ambiance and food! Went there with my mom on10/29/2019. Got the shrimp tempura dinner, tuna ngiri, and a soft shell crab maki. Superb food. Totally satisfied my Japanese food craving!

OT
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really delicious. You can eat real Japanese foods.
Great experience, today.

JB
Milwaukee
2 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and reasonable pricing! Love the ramen and sushi.

G
Las Vegas
3 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Good value

p
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Umai is my go-to place for Japanese in Chicago. I've never had a bad meal there and have been there 20+ times. It is where I take out-of-town guests that want authentic Japanese at reasonable prices. Bonus that it is right down the street from Jazz Showcase so you can get your live music on after a fabulous meal!!

CB
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2019
Overall1food3service1ambience3

They added items on tab without my permission. This is not cool.

j
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food here is always consistent and good. I love the variety of sushi, really good ramen and various Japanese entrees.

j
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always the food was amazing. Sushi was fresh and well prepared. Service was timely and friendly. This is our favorite Japanese restaurant in Chicago.

OT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Great place to get Japanese food. Many options available and very reasonable pricing.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

YUMMY!!! The food at Umai is always delicious and the staff is always friendly & polite. On a busy night dining indoors usually makes conversing a bit difficult as it’s a pretty small space so it can get kind of loud. However, my favorite time is during the summer months when we can dine on the patio which allows for more ease of conversation and great Chicago summer people watching.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband took me here for my 35th birthday, it was delicious and service was very fast!

OT
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience5

The food is always great and consistent. They have a really large and diverse menu

OT
St. Louis
2 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

I wasn't greeted right away when I walked in even though there were two people standing there at the counter and we made eye contact. I think one girl was being trained. Our waitress was friendly but seemed very rushed which made me want to rush and leave quickly. The food itself was very good but pricier than I thought. Overall, I enjoyed it.

T
Nashville
8 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Been to UMAI twice during visits to Chicago. Always an awesome meal and experience.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Tons of food for your money, wow.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful Sushi

JR
Dallas
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Service and food were excellent. We scheduled a dinner for 3 and ended up expanding to 4 without any issue. Compliments to the chef.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall3food2service4ambience4

It wasn’t the type of sushi bar we were going for. There weren’t a ton of sushi options & there was no option to get the sushi cooked (I know I know) - so if you’re looking for any fried rolls or sautéed veggies with your teriyaki chicken - this is not your place!