Sushi Mizutani is, along with Sukiyabashi Jiro, Sushi Saito, Sushi Yoshitake and Sawada, widely considered to be among the five best sushi restaurants in Tokyo, and many consider it to be the best. The chef, Hachiro Mizutani, has been making sushi for roughly five decades and is a former protégé at both Sukiyabashi Jiro and Yoshino. He is a humble, respectful and kindly man, whose reputation for reticence with foreigners is largely attributable to the fact that he speaks very little English. Reservations for one of the 10 seats must be made in Japanese, and the ¥30,000 omakase is cash-only.
While the restaurant isn’t the absolute best sushi restaurant we’ve ever been to – Masa in NYC, for instance, is a holistically superior restaurant despite the howling and gnashing of teeth that statement will produce in NYC’s hipster naysayers – it is emphatically among a handful of the very best in the world, and it did serve the absolute best of a number of individual items that we’ve ever had: ikura (salmon roe), maguro (tuna), awabi (abalone) and tamago (egg custard). The swollen ikura is served as an amuse bouche in a bowl and eaten with a spoon. It is almost creamy, with no discernible fishiness, an electrifying way to commence the meal. The maguro was so perfectly buttery and fine that it eclipsed even the o-toro I’ve had at nearly every other sushi restaurant. Needless to say, the cho-toro and o-toro that followed were also sublime. Mizutani is known for the quality of his blended rice, which is served at a perfectly calibrated temperature, texture and density, and this was especially evident in the tuna series. The awabi was, for abalone, not chewy at all. And the tamago… I fear we will sully it by even attempting to describe it. It is not just the best tamago at any restaurant, anywhere, in the world; it is the best by such a shockingly substantial margin that it’s hard to conceive it ever being surpassed. Light, airy and delicate, it was simultaneously rich and decadent. There was also smooth, creamy, silken uni (sea urchin), an outstanding saba (mackerel) and very fine sayori (halfbeak/needlefish) and kohada (Japanese gizzard shad)
The warm minimalist interior is largely composed of wood, with several pieces of beautiful pottery and abstract art. Mizutani’s charming wife runs the front of the house, refilling tea and sake. Depending on the composition of the other diners, it can be quiet and reverential, or even festive.
Juno Building 9F
+81 3 3573-5258 Mon-Sat, 11:30am-1:30pm, 5pm-9:30pm
- Hachiro Mizutani, Chef
- Best Decor
- Best Service
- Private Dining Room
- Tasting Menu Omakase: ¥30,000
- Michelin Guide : ★★ (2015) Review History...