When you want to look for the freshest sashimi and seafood in Tokyo, it has got to be Tsukiji market. Even though the main wet market has already shifted out of the compound, there is still the outer market that houses many restaurants that serves the freshest sashimi dishes in the whole of Tokyo.
One of the most sought after sashimi item here is the cho toro (Fatty tuna) as well as the uni (sea urchin). It is very expensive to eat these sashimi items outside of Japan and even more difficult to get the fresh and tasty ones. I have tried uni outside of Japan and I hated the metallic after taste you get from them. My friend recommended me to this restaurant where tonnes of people visit them for their uni bowls as it is so sweet and nice so I came and truly there was a long queue. We arrived around lunch and we were given a number to come back 1.5 hrs later.
When we returned at our designated time slot, there was still a long queue of people waiting to get a number. We got our number after 15 mins of wait. The restaurant is packed but they had our table ready for us after a short 5 mins wait outside the door for them to prep the table.
As with most good restaurants, you can see various celebrities signatures plastered all across the wall of the restaurant.
There are a few counter seats where you can watch the chefs cut the fish and prepare the other seafood items as well as table seating which is away from the chef counter. There are many server walking around so even when you are seated away from the counter, service is very prompt and polite. Most of the staff speak English so there is no issue for tourists.
As you can see from the menu, one of the most popular item is the uni bowl which is filled to the brim with uni.
Being sceptical over the taste of the uni, I ordered the uni, fatty tuna and salmon roe bowl. I am crazy over cho toro and ikura so I was very pleased with this combo. The first thing I tried was the uni and it was unbelievably good. There was no metallic after taste and all I got was wave and wave of buttery creamy sweet goodness. I started to regret my choice as it quickly shined over the ikura and the cho toro. To be fair, the ikura was crazy fresh and full of umami flavours while the cho toro had good fats distributed in the meat so it semi melts in your mouth.The overall serving of the bowl might look small but is very filling
Full of envy as I looked at my friend’s bowl which had double the portion of uni. This bowl alone costs over ¥3500 but it is well worth it and I suspect you can never get it at this price out of Japan.
We had additional servings of each item as they were just so good although I must say I was most impressed by the uni. I was close to scrapping the bowl for the last bit as we were finishing the plate. The meal was hardly cheap but I was willing to pay for such quality and I did eye other customers ordering giant scallops and sashimi of other seafood so it is definitely a restaurant I would recommend to visit when you are in Tsukiji Market
I noticed there were other smaller stores offering similar offerings at a much lower price nearer to the main road with long queues as well. It might be something I would try to see if they are as good but these stores have only a capacity of 2 to 5 persons each time as they are like small food counters so if you prefer to sit comfortably and eat at your pace and willing to spend on food, you will be better off at one of the bigger restaurants.
Address: 4 Chome-14-15 Tsukiji, Chuo City, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan
Operating hours: 10 am to 2.30 pm and 5 pm to 8.30 pm ( Closed on Wednesday)