Tokyo | Sukiyabashi Jiro Honten すきやばし次郎 銀座本店
Sukiyabashi Jiro is no doubt the most famous sushiya (sushi restaurant) worldwide, which is also the dreaming place for most of the sushi lovers. It has two branches in Tokyo, the second store in Roppongi which is controlled by the younger son. The original store (honten) in Ginza is awarded 3 Michelin stars, the owner and master chef, 89-year-old Jiro Ono, was featured in the 2011 documentary "Jiro Dreams of Sushi." Many regard him as the world's best sushi chef. Sukiyabashi Jiro is also one of Asia'a Best 50 Restaurants.
Visited: May.20.2015 (Dinner)
Address: Tsukamoto Sogyo Building, Basement 1st Floor,2-15, Ginza 4-chome, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan 東京都中央区銀座4-2-15 塚本総業ビルB1F
Hours:11:30-14:00 ; 17:30-20:30 (Closed on: Sundays, public holidays, Saturday evenings, mid-August, and Year-end holidays)
Price/Menu: 30,000 Omakase only
Jiro opens for both lunch and dinner, the small sushi place can only fit 23 diners everytime. Reservation is really hard, it is almost impossible if you call the restaurant by yourself, i have tried thousands of times bymyself. The best way is to ask your hotel concierge to book for you. I stayed with Conrad Tokyo, I told them the length of my stay in Tokyo, and ask them to book any day any meal as long as there's seat available. Besides Conrad, i have also heard good things happened at Capital, Hyatt, Pennisula, Mandarin Oriental.
Even if you get a reservation, it doesn't means that the father Jiro himself will be at the restaurant. Sometimes he is not there as he has to go health check. Otherwise, his older son takes care of the restaurant.
There is no second option of menu at Jiro, only one Omakase set priced at 30,000 JPY is served, which includes 18 pieces of sushi. I am sure you have heard good stories about the food here, but really bad stories about the service and entire experiences. Usually eating at a sushiya, especially michelin-starred, you can take your time and enjoy your meal with a drink, but Jiro is really a 'Fast' food compare to other famous sushiyas.
My reservation was at 5:30 pm and the meal starts at 5:40. Pictures taken by phones and camera are allow, but only of sushi. You cannot take pictures of the decor, the people, nor the appetizers. My dinner start with some broiled edamame.
I was soon served the first piece, Karei (flat fish). It has a clean taste, but the fish itself has so many tendons thus a little bit disappointing. The shari was in body temperature, every single grain was 'fat' and chewy, the flavor of the shari balanced well.
5. Chu-toro 中卜口 (Semi-fatty Tuna)
The most impressive piece of the meal was Shako, the mantis shrimp. There was generous portion of shrimp roe under its belly, the shrimp itself was very juicy and tender, the sweet soy sauce perfectly enhanced the flavor.
18.Tamago 玉子 (Egg Omelete)
Jiro's shari is more sour than other sushiyas i have been to, the size of nigiri might be quite stuffing after 18 pieces. No doubt top quality and every piece was quite harmony, although personally think slightly heavier in tastes for my liking.Regarding to its fame of 'the best sushi on the planet', i definitely don't think this is the best sushi experience i have ever had. To be honest, i was quite disappointing for the overall experience of having nearly 20 nigiri in about 25 mintues, accompanied by the fact that the sushi was not really my cup of tea. I would prefer to sit down and enjoy my food with drinks rather than being so rush.