Authenticity can be hard to come by in terms of Asian cuisine in the Midwest, which is why many restaurants in Wisconsin stick to referring to their menus as being inspired by an Asiatic region. However, this is not the case at Rice n Roll Bistro in Milwaukee. Customers can tell it’s different almost immediately.
The original brick-and-mortar Rice n Roll Bistro developed such a cult following after it first opened on Milwaukee’s East Side in 2015 that owners Tony Koraneekit, JJ Lert and Tammy Lert later added a second location, named KIN, in Wauwatosa.
Japanese-Thai fusion is an apt description of the culinary concept at both locales. Chefs Koraneekit and Lert superpower is first-hand knowledge—much of which previously gained by cooking with family members earlier in life. Thus, in the kitchen, neither cuts any corners. Every dish is made from scratch, including each curry paste they use. An impressive feat for the number of offerings available for dine-in, carry-out and delivery.
Over 60 different kinds of sushi are featured, in addition to a variety of teriyaki, yuzu and drunken noodle entrees. KIN also has a few appetizers aimed specifically at appealing to American bar food stalwarts such as sriracha buffalo wings, truffle parmesan fries and crispy calamari.
The notion that literally anyone could sit at a table prepared by Chefs Koraneekit and Lert and leave well fed is no exaggeration. Especially since there are several stellar vegan options like the sweet garden roll—stuffed with shitake mushroom, carrot and cucumber—along with a gluten-free menu stacked with Donburi, sashimi and Thai street food like Pad Thai. Plus, an all-time customer fave continues to be the crabmeat fried rice—sautéed with massive chunks of crabmeat, garlic and butter then served with a tangy lime dressing. More than a few morsels that, without a doubt, should be on every Wisco foodie’s bucket list this year.
To learn more about Rice N Roll Bistro, visit ricenrollbistro.com.