With sushi central to its menu, this elegant, sleek dining room celebrates Japan with beautiful wood paneling, a long sushi bar, and both table and banquette seating the length of the airy space. Owners Emily and Houston Carpenter (whose other restaurants include Little Em’s Oyster bar, Up Scale, and Restaurant Claudine) have already made a big splash in this city with very different concepts. This extends their range. We dove in with a mocktail that bested most we’ve tried; no doubt full-octane cocktails feature the same interesting mix of familiar and unfamiliar. The food menu is arranged in categories from makimono (rolled sushi) to temaki (hand rolls) to both chilled and hot dishes. And of course there is a list of sashimi and nigiri, so we started with the latter, moving from striped bass to rainbow trout to king salmon, finishing with eggy tamago. While all were nicely cut and quite fresh, they were not as chilled as we like our sushi and seemed very skimpy on the nikiri (the sweet soy sauce traditionally applied by the sushi chef right before serving). The roll we chose was confusing at best, featuring abalone that was a tad skimpy and chewy at best). A final nigiri selection, featuring not fish but A5 Wagyu (that’s the finest grade of Japan’s celebrated cattle breed) rounded out our samples. Had it not had a streak of gristle, we would have felt better about the $18 price tag (for one bite). Interestingly, the best thing we tried all evening was a lovely and simple grilled eggplant dish, satisfyingly smooth and silky in a garlic miso glaze. Not far behind was assorted vegetable tempura, light and well-fried (the kobacha squash was a stand-out). Given that Nineteen Hyaku has been praised by others for its omakase service (a prix fixe line-up of sushi chosen by the chef), we look forward to trying that next time.