Who doesn’t love a good combination of seafood and red meat? ? I mean…except for my beloved vegans and vegetarians. ??♀️
Traditionally speaking, surf and turf has a delicious combination of seafood options such as shrimp, prawns, lobster, squid or scallops and a nice juicy steak, burger or filet mignon – depending on your preference. Served in steakhouses, the surf and turf cuisines are often considered rather pricey since the entree involves two of the most expensive meat options on a menu. Well, that has changed.
The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar
Located in the North Hills shopping center in Raleigh, NC, meet the restaurant where beef meets fish. Cowfish is one of the most popular eateries in the North Hills area so it is recommended to make a reservation ahead of time. I arrived on a Friday evening and both the indoor and outdoor dining areas were packed, not counting the long line of hungry guests who were waiting to be seated according to their reservation. As I inquired about making a reservation for 1, I was kindly notified that the restaurant was filled to capacity but I could return the next day. I asked what time they would open and came back the next morning at 11:00a EST.
Man, am I glad that I did.
I ordered the most popular appetizer on the menu while waiting for my main entree to come. James, my courteously masked server for the morning, was highly respectful, kind, and knowledgeable about the menu choices. I love asking servers, “what do you recommend?” to see if their preferences sound like something I’d want to try. James recommended the creamy crab rangoon dip as an appetizer. Considering that I am in love with crab rangoon wontons, I gladly followed the server’s advice.
This warm, gooey, mouthwatering dip had a parmesan panko crust and was served with wonton crisps, drizzled in sweet chili sauce, and topped with chives for $13. The dip was literally ridiculous.
The dip’s parmesan panko crust alone would make you slap your cousin. Too bad I didn’t have anyone with me!
As I waited for my main course, I examined the menu again. Cowfish introduced a unique fusion of burgers and sushi that allowed my mind and taste buds to take an interesting journey, with Cowfish as my personal guide.
Main course: Burger + Sushi = The Burgushi
I ordered the all American bacon double cheeseburgooshi.
Seasoned natural beef with yellow cheddar cheese, white cheddar cheese, Applewood bacon, and red onion, wrapped in soy paper and potato strings, then flash-fried and topped with ketchup, mustard, dill pickles and Roma tomato. After it is flash-fried, the burgushi is topped with Cowfish sauce and served with seasoned house fries for a total of $16.
I also ordered a mimosa that came in a cute, tall shooter glass with a lemon on the side for $8.
The burgushi was brought to my table by Jenny, who was absolutely adorable and incredibly knowledgeable about the quality of ingredients used to make the burgushi.
To my surprise, the burgushi (burgooshi) had the best of both flavors – a bacon cheeseburger and sushi! ?
The burgushi had a little pickle on top and came with a side of ginger. GINGER! Just like a traditional sushi roll! I put a little piece of ginger on one of the burgushi slices to see if there would be a weird taste.
UH-MAAAAAAAY-ZING! Who would have thought that ginger with a cheeseburger would taste so good?!
It was like eating a cheeseburger and eating a tempura-style sushi. I’m not a fan of pickles but in the future, I would request for the pickles to be omitted. Still…it was unbelievably delectable.
Although, I wasn’t a fan of the shoestring fries, the rest of the food that I ordered was more than enough and I couldn’t finish it all.
I packed up my all American double bacon cheeseburgooshi and the remaining crab rangoon dip and chips to save for later that day.
The CowFish Sushi Burger Bar was very clean and had a satisfying vibe. From the outdoor decor to the beautiful art hanging on the walls inside of the restaurant, to the multi-ethnic variety of music, the atmosphere was incredibly inviting. The music was a really nice touch! You could hear the music all throughout the restaurant until you walk into the restrooms.
When I first arrived, I went to the restroom and cleaned up before ordering my food. I walked in and noticed that there was someone talking. It was a recording of something called, “Moonshine and Sake Sessions.”
IT. IS. HILARIOUS.
The “Moonshine and Sake Sessions” is basically a language class with over 100 sayings in three different translations – American English, Indonesian, and Redneck. I could’ve sworn that I heard Spanish, however, I was told by Luke, one of the many helpful servers, that it was Indonesian.
So, again, there’s no music in the bathroom. There’s a language class. You hear the same phrase in three different translations. But the absolute best translation you’ll hear is the Redneck translation. Undeniably entertaining.
The staff at the Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar was phenomenal. From my server, James, to Jenny, the young lady who brought my burgushi to me, to Luke, the young guy dressed up for Halloween as a doctor. Everyone was friendly, attentive, responsive, and courteous enough to wear their masks to keep themselves and guests protected.
The Modern Payment System
The payment system reminded me of how I pay for meals in China. In order to pay for your bill, on your receipt, there is a QR code to scan with your smartphone. This is actually a very modern system that I’m shocked to not see implemented as much. I scanned my receipt’s QR code and paid the total bill of $40.05 (tax included) and add a tip for my server, James.
Later that day, I decided to try my leftovers to see if they would still be any good. Before I left the restaurant, Luke offered to send a fresh order of wonton crisps with me because he said the sweet chili sauce would cause the ones in the original order to be soggy. I kindly declined and chose to see what the chips would taste like just as they were. Besides, I had a bag of kettle chips that I could use as a backup in case he was right.
To my surprise, the wonton crisps still had a crunch to them! It was insane how good they tasted without using a microwave! Because my hotel room didn’t have one. Of course, some of the crisps that had a little extra sweet chili sauce on them were bit soggy but it was only a few. I was surprised at how firm most of them still were.
And don’t get me started again on the crab rangoon dip! ? The dip topped with parmesan panko crumbs was still slap-worthy but I wouldn’t recommend eating the burgushi cold because the beef’s taste wasn’t as flavorful as it was earlier in the day.
The winner of the day???
The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar’s crab Rangoon dip and the wonton chips with sweet Thai chili sauce.
This is the kind of food that would make you slap all your cousins. That’s just how good it is.
If you’re ever in the Raleigh North Hills area, Charlotte, NC, or at Universal Studios in Orlando, FL, you must give the Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar a try if you’re a surf-n-turf-on-a-budget fan. ? Also, I’d like to thank the owner, Marcus Hall, and the Cowfish family for being such gracious and courteous hosts. I look forward to returning to the restaurant and trying other delicacies on the menu in the near future.