Quest for best sushi in SF
Don't get me started, if you are coming from LA you might be disappointed. However, here are lot's of threads you can look through on this- see what might be of interest then narrow it down. Two places that get the best reviews are Kiss Seafood and
Sebo. Here are the links for both of these places-
re: Lori SF
Thanks Lori, I did look through the old threads but I thought there might be something new out there or some new people who wanted to weigh in. I live in Indianapolis, not sushi heaven, but I grew up in New England and travel often to the west coast, most recently Seattle where I had a fabulous sushi/nigiri dinner at Shiro's. As for what I like, the freshest fish and creative preps and a user friendly sushi menu (as I'm still something of a novice) are all pluses.
Kiss has a limited selection at the sushi bar and the restaurant's strengths are entirely in their more traditional simple/subtle yet elegant cooked dishes (and I have yet to try this place out).
I've been to Shiro's in Seattle once and sadly didn't get to sit in front of Shiro-san, though I wasn't blown away by his then #2 man's craft or the overall quality of fish that night. I had a much better time at Kisaku in the Greenlake area which surpassed Shiro's in terms of quality, and variety (local seafood offerings and imports from Japan).
So based on your criteria, I think Sushi Koo on Irving street will certainly satisfy what you are looking for. Owner Kiyoshi-san told me he used to work at one of the, if not the oldest Japanese restaurant in Boston (forgot the name) for a number of years before he came to the West Coast, plus some years at Sushi Ran in Sausalito (across the Golden Gate Bridge past SF). He's certainly stronger with cooked dishes, but him or any of his sous chefs also do an excellent job with nigiri sushi as well.
For strictly traditional no nonsense old school nigiri sushi, Ino-Sushi in SF Japantown is another great place, although you may want to read up on other threads before you go.
re: K K
I was not impressed with Koo on Irving, in fact I found the fish in the case looking sad and lacked that fresh vibrancy. It's walking distance from my house and I wanted it to be good.
knielson2 you might want to try Grandeho's Kamekyo in Cole Valley, this is near my house and I have never had a bad experience. They offer fresh fish and if you let them make you what they want you will have a great treat. If I did not live near this place I would go there.
943 Cole St., (415) 759-8428
Also, Sebo is on my list in Hayes Valley seems like they know what they are doing.
Yeah, not so much new really since these threads. Hama-ko, Ino, and Murasaki have traditional sushi, but the general protocol is also more traditionally Japanese. Sebo has great fish, and the chefs execute a good mix of traditional preparations with some more creative nuances -- but the environment is also considerably less traditional, e.g. house music is often hip-hop, and sushi is served on several plates in sequence, rather than keeping one geta for the whole meal. Not necessarily bad, but different -- I've found it to be nice.
If you don't care a whit for the environment and it's really just the sushi that is of interest, you'll find nice items at any of these places.