Domo Cafe in Fort Walton Beach is an Asian fusion restaurant that offers sushi, noodles, rice, Boba milk tea and more.
Fist bump, anyone?
If the cashier reads your order back to you and everything sounds correct, then that is exactly what you will get at Domo Cafe in Fort Walton Beach. The dark side of me wants to know what happens if you turn down said fist bump, but I have an inkling you won’t.
Domo Cafe is a hip Asian fusion joint tucked into a small strip mall on Hurlburt Road. If the parking lot looks full, it’s safe to assume the majority of the cars belong to people inside that restaurant.
Locals dig it.
This place not only has a whole sushi menu, but also offers fried rice, noodles and Boba milk tea flavors ranging from cookies ’n’ creme to mango. And that’s just the start.
It’s tough for me to choose between sushi or an entree with noodles or fried rice.
It’s not that tough; I order both. You probably should, too.
For an appetizer, my guest and I ordered the pork dumplings, which come with soy sauce. They were tender dumplings filled with yummy pork, and also were a true appetizer. I still had room in my tummy for my entree, which I sincerely appreciated.
Other small dish choices are the summer roll, edamame, pork or veggie spring rolls, fried cheese wontons, veggie dumplings and shrimp tempura.
For my entree, I chose sesame chicken with fried rice. The dish was literally perfect.
The sauce was sweet, and the rice had a flawless fluffy texture. My favorite part were the extra ingredients incorporated, such as fried egg, green onions and multicolor sesame seeds. I finished the meal in five minutes flat.
There are several similar dishes offered with chicken, shrimp, salmon, pork or tofu. Some are teryaki, katsu, curry katsu, basil, Mongolian and Korean spicy. These dishes can come in a bowl with rice or veggies, or in a bento box with two optional sides, such as stir-fry green beans, veggie spring roll, fried cheese wonton, fried tofu, fried pork dumplings and more. Several noodle bowls are available, too.
I know sushi is wonderful, but sesame chicken puts up a hard fight. It looked chic, too.
Plating and color are definitely apart of any sushi experience. Domo Cafe has that part down. I dig how the sushi arrives on long, sushi-roll-sized plates, and the entrees kick it in a bento box or deep bowl.
My guest ordered the Kamakaze sushi roll, which has spicy tuna, cucumber, avocado, seared escolar, jalapeno with spicy sauce and rice wine vinegar. He said the jalapeno gives the roll its spice and crunch. We have been here many times, and this is his favorite roll on the menu.
The sushi menu has all the traditional sushi rolls, such as the California roll. But, it has loads of other rolls, too, including a section of vegetarian rolls.
Examples of rolls are the Surf & Turf roll with boiled shrimp, steak, asparagus and spicy mayo; the Florida roll with tuna, salmon, cream cheese, avocado, scallions and fish roe; and the Mexican roll with katsu shrimp, avocado, mayo and fish roe.
There is a roll for you.
Better yet, there is a dish for you. Another meal option is a sashimi bowl, salad bowl, soup or specialty entree, such as tuna tataki or Poke tuna salmon.
We didn’t order desert – well not exactly. We ordered the Aloha sushi roll, which, trust me, is basically the same thing.
The fried roll is made with tempura shrimp, strawberry, mango, avocado, cream cheese, coconut flakes and eel sauce. It’s like any other fried dessert, really freaking good. It not only has a sweet, fruity flavor coming from the strawberry and mango, but also a richer, more decadent sweetness coming from the cream cheese and coconut. I’ve had this many times and, frankly, I didn’t even realize it had shrimp.
True dessert options are vanilla, green tea or red bean ice cream, fried ice cream and fried cheesecake. We once ordered the fried cheesecake and it was quite lovely.
We didn’t order anything special to drink, which I regret. The Boba milk tea section is huge with flavors such as coconut, honeydew, banana cream, papaya, red bean, strawberry, pineapple, coffee, avocado and more. It also offers beer, sake and hot tea.
With its minimalistic, modern style, I’ve always thought Domo Cafe looked stylish.
The walls are a stark gray contrasted with intricate, colorful anime posters and small printed photographs. The rest of the space is primarily black with low lighting. This gives it a cool date night vibe, but also a vibe for lively, foodie style nights with friends and family.
When I walked in this time, though, I was surprised to see it decorated for the holidays. String lights draped across the restaurant, stockings hung across the wall and a bright white Christmas tree stood at the back. It was downright magical.
Domo Cafe really harnesses its quirky nature. What I like most about the space is how perfectly out of place it feels.
It’s already a surprise, hidden on Hurlburt Road in a small strip mall, just off Beal Parkway NW. Then inside is this small, rectangular contemporary space that’s bustling with the same organized chaos as an urban city.
Domo Cafe has mastered the art of effortless cool.
At first glance, this place looks bustling and a little intimidating.
But, if you stay, you will understand it’s a well-oiled machine. Domo Cafe has a hyper efficient system for ordering, providing takeout orders and serving, that keeps people fed and moving.
When you walk in, the entryway has a stack of menus and a screen with additional menu items. You make your selections and pay first. Fist bump to follow.
Our cashier was so sweet. She got our order correct the first time and was generous with a smile and two fist bumps after.
We took our number to the empty bar area, as many of the tables were taken — even on a Sunday night. But, hey, that’s how you know it’s good. Within five minutes, our server brought the pork dumplings as an appetizer.
Shortly after, she brought our main dishes with silverware, napkins, soy sauce and wasabi. She met all of our needs efficiently and always asked if we needed anything else.
While the restaurant gets busy, the speed of service matches it entree for entree. And, as a side note, the staff members genuinely seem like they’e having a good time. How rare is that?
A FINAL TASTE
Domo Cafe is a hidden gem that offers Asian fusion and sushi in style.