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May 5, 2008 08:44 AM

Ushi Wakamaru question

i finally went to ushi for dinner on saturday with a cousin in town. the place was about 15% full at 8:45pm on a saturday night.

we opted to sit at a table since we didnt want to do omakase but my question is...on the menu it says 'chef's selection'...15 pieces for $50. if we sat at the bar, would this be piece by piece omakase? or would they just put it on one plate as a platter?

i thought the quality was absolutely excellent and it was a great environment to enjoy the fish and talk. i plan on going back quite a bit but would love to find out the above question. if thats the case, $50 omakase of that quality is a goddamn steal.

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  1. The chef's selection is in flights: 5 pieces at a time, so three flights, if my memory serves correctly. It is a great value but they do not serve it to you one piece at a time, even if you're at the bar.

    3 Replies
    1. re: kathryn

      are they just cuts of fish from the menu or special preparations? are they dressed with soy sauce like in yasuda?

      1. re: sam1

        They are not dressed (except for the kinds of fish that almost always are like mackerel with chopped ginger) and they are just regular cuts of fish. Not very good, IMO. In my experience, Ushi is only good only if you sit in front of Hideo, do omakase, and buy him a few rounds of drinks. Even if you do omakase in front of other chefs, the quality is actually not that high.

        1. re: cimui

          I cannot agree more.

          To me having the chef's 15 pieces will not make me have the urge to go back to this restaurant again. The omakase, on the other hand, was an experience that would worth repeated visits.

    2. it's 15 pieces of sushi. The good news is it is a blend of that day's fresh stuff, and some of the classics there. Ask for the white shrimp, the crab, the lobster, the ikura (they smoke it there) any of the snappers, the urchin there is great, etc. It comes out in 5, 10, or 15 pieces. I tend to order the 10 - and then do a "Greatest hits" of the first 10 for the next five. Not dressed much, but if you ask for something different, you can get it. Oh, make sure the toro is involved, too. Winner.

      1. "the place was about 15% full at 8:45pm on a saturday night" ...

        In 2006, the New Yorker review closed with ...
        "It tends to run out quite early in the evening, because the restaurant, which has been open a little more than a year, has a loyal following among Japanese and Japanophile customers, who throng the bar most nights and fall upon the rarer items with the zeal of the truly homesick."

        Most early arrivals I've sat with and among are typically not ordering "sets".

        2 Replies
        1. re: TheDescendedLefticleOfAramis

          i dunno...everything on the menu was still available when i ordered.

          1. re: sam1

            Permit this odd digression:

            You and I happen to be out for a standing rib roast.
            The butcher hauls a three and four rib cut from his locker.
            Same beast, primal, shop, hand ...
            and, more than likely *(in this case)*, same "$/lb".
            Your call ... do you walk with the "small end"?

            This is a fine shop, period.

        2. Love this place, love Hideki, love the variety and freshness, love the gentle lady servers & love the price. I have never eaten there without experiencing a new dish, which after 38 years of sushi, ain't easy!