To say that I was a sushi snob before… An anonymous doorway in Nishiazabu, seven bar seats, no menu, and thirty-five plus courses of sushi nirvana changed my rules of sushi engagement.
As the number of choices in the US dwindle due to inconsistent or inadequate quality;1 I was very curious, and skeptical, if sushi (and raw fish in general) was “that much better” in Japan. The fish is not necessarily fresher since many high-end places air ship it from Japan; what does it matter if the fish is sitting in a restaurant waiting for dinner, or on a plane? Since business connections are made over many years in Japan, was it possible that native practitioners had access to higher quality ingredients? And what of the sushi itself – could its art form be more elevated from the highest expressions on American soil? Time was at a premium, and there were many non-sushi places to try, but I ear-marked Sushiso Masa as “the place” based on a friend’s (offline) report.