Sasa has elevated the dining scene in this restaurant-savvy town since opening in 2009. Izakaya, Japanese small plates, are presented with elegant simplicity in a dining room remarkable for its stylish comfort. Our two most recent visits revealed a kitchen both creative and confident, with raw fish that is nothing less than stunning. Whether you prefer sashimi (indulge in the omakase plate) or nigiri with sushi rice that just clings, expect a revelation. We adored the intricate preparations of fried soft-shell crab with turnips and pesto, and crispy duck confit buns with pickled onion. Lush salmon skewers in a pool of wasabi-perfumed beurre blanc and crispy smelt (fish fries) with aioli dipping sauce show Sasa is as fun as it is refined. Multiple venues, including a side patio and sleek bar, match any mood. 1432 N. Main St., (925) 210-0188, sasawc.com. Lunch and dinner daily.