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Oysy Seafood Buffet

Update 4/8/11: Oysy is closed.

In a word: The tamago we never had, and we want to get to know you better.[1]

The specs: #0528  
Address, hours & details via Isthmus; reviews at Isthmus, YelpMadison LiveJournal, 77 Square, Search for Authentic Food, TDPF, listing at Eat Drink Madison, Oysy on Urbanspoon

Latest Oysy news and reviews

JM, Kyle, and Nichole ate the buffet.
The bill was about $55, or $18.33/person, plus tip.
JM and Kyle gave Oysy Seafood Buffet a B+; Nichole gave Oysy Seafood Buffet a B (see our grading rubric).

Despite the nearly-fluorescent, omnipresent yellow paint (see also Oysy's sister restaurant Asian Kitchen) and brightly lit buffet stations inside, Oysy hasn't yet pulled up its Tumbleweed Southwest Mesquite Grill roots. Outside, the wraparound, beamed porch remained, as did booths of faux-timber and a giant open floor space that looked great for line dancing. The "sushi buffets of the Olde West" feel was surreal but grew on us in a Kill Bill kind of way.

Once we got over the dual hurdles Kyle identified as, basically, "SEAFOOD BUFFET?" and "But Takumi is just across the street!" we found enough food to fill and surprise us, but not enough to really be memorable or return-worthy. If you lurve large quantities of seafood, you may make this a regular stop, but it is too pricey otherwise.

Plate 3The numerous food stations offered plenty of variety. We were dazzled by the scene, but counted at least six: steamed dim sum, cold fruit and seafood, hot vegetables, hot fried stuff, traditional (i.e. Americanized) entrees, and dessert islands, plus soup, sushi, a beef roast and ice cream along the back wall. Hot and cold were served at the right temperatures and things were arranged attractively.

The dim sum quality varied quite a lot - the steamed buns were not great, but the dumplings were.

Glazed bananas juxtaposed with mussels was another stretch, and upon reflection none of us spent much time at that station, either.

The hot vegetable station's biggest draw was emerald-green asparagus, though (as we were soon to see again at QQ) vegetables often get the short end of the chopstick at buffets. This station also offered steamed, buttery tilapia filets and whole shrimp.

Hot fried stuff included all the rangoon and egg rolls you'd expect, and sesame chicken, General Tso's, and other standbys all looked about average. Somewhere in here was where Nichole and Kyle stocked up on shark rolls, small cuts of cooked shark wrapped around a sticky vegetable-and-meat filling.

Finally, the horseshoe-shaped back wall ran the gamut. We were all surprised by a standing beef roast but no one tried it; on the other end of the bar, a tidy row of soup bowls held seaweed flakes, diced onions and tofu cubes, ready for the diner to pour her own miso broth.

In between was the sushi bar, where chefs constantly replenished dishes. In a testament to (we hope) the memorability of the sushi and not our own failing memories, we tried some rolls and sashimi but just don't have much to say about them. One standout was a fresh, crunchy cucumber roll, a complex wheel-within-a-wheel of cilantro, rice stick, and crab.



The desserts were numerous and shiny, some more meretricious than others (the orange layer cake, while gorgeous, was a bland mistake, as were most of the gelatin-based desserts). Green tea ice cream in a 3/4 size cone was a plus, as was the coffee-flavored layer cake.

The menu proudly stakes Oysy's claim as "the first & only authentic Japanese restaurant in town." Whether, as Kyle observed, this counts Muramoto ventures as too fusion and takes a stab at Takumi for not being run by ethnic Japanese (and just plain ignores Edo, Takara, Ginza, Wasabi etc.) is anyone's guess.


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There is a Chinese buffet restaurant I go to sometimes that also has that Coffee flavored layer cake. I LOVE that cake and wish it was possible to buy it at a regular store.

I give this place a C. The hot panko coated seafood was delicious, the sushi is nothing special. BUT, they do have 2 types of raw oysters (at least when I went in Jan.) and if you eat enough of those, it's a more reasonable buffet price.

Ugh! This place was so gross! Everything was very, very standard in terms of your typical asian buffet. But the sushi was laughable. All three in my lunch party found the raw fish mostly inedible. The fish had clearly been sitting out long enough to turn to rubber. I really don't see this place lasting that long.

I agree this is mostly standard Asian buffet food - nothing special. The sushi was pretty much grocery-store-quality (like the kind you get at Woodman's in the little plastic containers) - but pretty cheap if you go at lunch time ($9.99 for AYCE). We felt we got our money's worth (we ate a lot of sushi!) but would give it a B/B- overall.

As of April 2011, Oysy is closed.

The comments to this entry are closed.


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