The restaurant, located in New York City’s West Village, is helmed by sushi chef Daisuke Nakazawa, a disciple of Jiro Ono (as in “Jiro Dreams of Sushi” fame).
Nakazawa serves a 20-course Omakase sushi menu that changes almost daily, depending on what fish is freshest. A meal costs $120 per person.
The restaurant is famously hard to get into — you have to book a reservation 30 days in advance — but I managed to snag a table there. I had high expectations, but the sushi and the dining experience still blew me away. I never knew that sushi could be so diverse and flavorful.
The four-star sushi restaurant is located in an unassuming storefront in New York City's West Village.
It's almost impossible to get a seat at the bar, where you pay an extra $30 to watch the master chefs work.
Before the meal began, a server brought over a tray of spices and condiments to show us what the chef used to prepare the sushi we were about to eat: fresh wasabi, several varieties of soy sauce, various salts, kelp, and herbs.
Meals usually start with a salmon course. I tried cherry salmon, smoked coho salmon and soy marinated king salmon -- and every piece tasted completely different. The server explained each dish and told us how to eat the course: from right to left.
The next course included four different types of fish: sea scallop, bigfin reef squid prepared with mint, fluke with kelp, and golden eye snapper.
One of my favourite things about omakase is that it forces you to try new fish. I would never order mackerel usually, but the mackerel course -- horse mackerel and Spanish mackerel -- was actually my favourite.
Then came tuna prepared four ways: skipjack tuna, lean bluefin tuna, soy marinated lean bluefin tuna, and fatty bluefin tuna. The last three pieces of tuna were all cut from the same fish yet they all tasted completely different.
The uni (sea urchin) course was creamy, slightly warm, and totally delicious. I'm an uni convert now.
The meal was almost over! We were already at our 18th piece: a hand roll of your choice. I chose dungeness crab.
Then came the finale: sea eel and egg custard, the restaurant's house specialty. Both dishes were sweet and rich and almost functioned as a type of dessert.
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