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Yasuda - OK to just do lunch?

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  • Imby May 14, 2008 07:19 PM
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Planning to do a "treat" meal at Yasuda but given certain constraints, currently planning to do a lunch there. Does this create any unpleasant limitations on selection or quality?

Thanks in advance.

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  1. You can still order omakase and you will get the same quality and types of fish as dinner. You can be as extravagant as you want with your omakase totals at $200+, or a more common omakase at your own range. As long as you have the appetite and the $$, it is nothing less than dinner.

    The only caveat is that it is definitely a bit more rush during lunch, so it is not really a relaxed omakase (as I would have liked it). You should definitely let them know if you want to do omakase at lunch time when you make reservation.

    1 Reply
    1. re: kobetobiko

      I think if you do a later lunch it will be less rushed though...I did one at 2 once and it was great, but that was years ago....

      kobe is correct about food quality, it is exaclty the same.

    2. I went for my first Yasuda experience recently. I sat at the bar for lunch with a friend who is a regular there. I'm not even sure exactly what was ordered on my behalf but the sushi chef basically served me three pieces of sushi at a time for maybe a total 10 pieces or so. It was divine. I have never tried such incredible sushi, and that includes my sushi breakfast in Tsukiji in Tokyo one early morning after watching the tuna auctions. I would highly recommend going! I have no idea what the meal came to because my friend was kind enough to pay. I plan to return, and would actually appreciate if someone could give me an idea of just how much a meal there may set me back. I had heard lunch was reasonably priced but the sushi was so incredible I'm thinking I must have received inaccurate information. (Sorry, don't mean to "hijack" your post here.)

      1 Reply
      1. re: uwsgrazer

        Thanks to all of you, that's exactly what I was hoping to hear about the food.
        We'll have a 3-year old with us so I don't know how relaxed it would be even if we were the only ones there :-)

      2. lunch and dinner are the same price i believe. and i doubt if dinner is much less rushed as they make it clear that reservation periods are with a ceiling for the next party.

        cost is what you make of it. nymagazine (nymag.com) has their "menu" online, but it doesn't include the prices for ala carte sushi. their ala carte is standardly and fairly priced, with many unusual selections. prices range from a modest $3ish for inexpensive pieces up to maybe $10 or so for high end toro, etc. most run in the $4-6 range.

        i have a big appetite for sushi, and depending on both how i order and the volume i feel like consuming, i've spent between $35-150 pre-tax/tip on myself.

        alekz

        2 Replies
        1. re: charlie_b

          Not sure what your basis of comparison is, but 35-150 is decidedly low to slightly above average in my opinion.

          1. re: tpigeon

            well, i may be a different kind of eater than you! just that you can eat a satisfying meal for a wide price range.

            the $150ish was probably a pretty huge meal with a lot of high end choices, mostly sashimi (i.e., no filling up on rice), and copious amounts of sake.

            the $35ish would be getting the $22ish pre-fixe sushi/sashimi combo (comes with soup or salad, both excellent) and chef's choice of 3 sashimi (usually a white fish, a less expensive cut of tuna, and mackerel), my *limited* choice of 4 sushi and one roll (you choose from a condensed list of fish, which does not include any of the more expensive fish, but often includes many "recommended" fish of the day and a good selection), then supplemented by 2-3 top choices of additional sushi or sashimi, like the uni and the freshwater "white" eel ("white" with lemon/sea salt versus the "dark" eel with traditional eel sauce).

            i think when you see the prices of individual sushi pieces that you can compare with other sushi places, Yasuda's prices are comparable with good sushi restaurants all over the city. some are more expensive and good. some are more expensive and not good. some are less expensive and decent-good. most that are less expensive are not worth one's time or money.

            perhaps unfortunately, i've never sat down and asked for omakase, but i do ask for their recommendations, and ask if there is something else they recommend i try based on my ordering preferences. i just like being in control of my meal and getting my favorite pieces. also, i'm more interested in something like "omakase" at a place that serves dishes that are different from traditional sushi. aside from trying a piece of fish that i would not normally select by my own choice (which i may or may not enjoy), i don't see what omakase at Yasuda would offer me.

            alekz

            alekz

        2. I'd like to piggy back on this thread as it matches perfectly my predicament. My boss asked me to lunch and I picked Yasuda as the place so I could show him good sushi. I assume he will be picking up the tab (which I didn't think about until after I made the reservation) and I don't want to overstep my bounds in ordering. I wanted him to have the best experience possible, but didn't even think that he'd be paying for my extravagance. So now I'm concerned about spending too much on myself and, additionally, I'm concerned that he won't be able to get full on an otherwise reasonable budget.

          Do you have to order omakase if sitting in front of Yasuda? Can I order individual pieces in an effort to keep the bill lower? Will they be offended if, say I tell him I only want to spend $35-$40 per person?

          6 Replies
          1. re: hamstrman

            The answer to your questions is absolutely not. I think that once you boss starts eating, your bill will run substantially higher based on his own decisions, thus alleviating you of the burden - the sushi is that good. Also, you can always offer to chip in which the boss will reject outright which also gets you off the hook :).

            You can also tell him if you want to get the best sushi in this hemishpere, this is the place to go, it might run $x and I am willing to chip in $y but I highly recommend we go. I would do at least $80 pp btw when coming up with $x.

            1. re: tpigeon

              I know... I'm kidding myself. I've been plenty of times and I personally have no trouble spending the money on the sushi equivalent of ambrosia. Him inadvertently spending a ton of money won't allieviate the burden on me if he never intended to spend the money in the first place. And my forcing him to reject my offer to split the cost is equally imposing and unfair to him. I figure I will mention how expensive it can be and tell him that if he is not a sushi afficionado, we can change restaurants.

              Thanks for your input. Additional input from other Chowhounders is still welcome.

              1. re: tpigeon

                Oh, also, did your "absolutely not" also apply to the omakase question? So we could order, say, 8-10 pieces each off of the menu for a total of about $40. I noticed most of the pieces are around $3.75. I only eat 15 pieces for dinner at which point I'm quite full.

                1. re: hamstrman

                  People order off the menu in front of Yasuda all the time. Most people around me order off the menu when I ate there...

                  1. re: tpigeon

                    This is a very helpful thread. Just to make sure I follow ...

                    I figure if I go to a place like Yasuda I would want to potentially try at least a couple of the sushi or other stuff that the chef may have as specials that particular day. Once the chef names and/or describes some specialties, though, I assume it's totally tacky to ask for the price(s), right (even though I would have no problem doing this about an entree or even an appetizer at a non-sushi restaurant)? If so then I guess one has to just be prepared to pay whatever it costs when the bill comes, right? Or can one start by mentioning some of the types of fish one has enjoyed in the past and ask the chef to serve at least some of these, in additon to some of his choices, wtihin some pre-determined budget? Sorry if any of these questions are redundant but I just want to be able to focus on enjoying the food without having to be preoccupied with what the bill will come to!

                    Thanks

                    1. re: uwsgrazer

                      You get a menu with all the prices on it (maybe except specials, I don't look at the menu much there). You can also tell the chef what you want to spend in advance and they will not go over it.

                      I would recommend telling the chef you buget in advance - the chef will then ask you what your preferences are and will also serve you based on what they think is freshest that day - not if you exclude that type of fish or seafood though...

            2. took my girlfriend here last year for a celebration dinner. Sat at the bar and ordered omakase. with all the Sake we could drink and more tuna than a normal person should eat, our bill was about 300 bucks sans tip.
              I have found you just need to be upfront, tell them omakase for 100 pp. that will set your budget up front. what you drink or order after the initial meal concludes is up to you. but it is worth it. With such high quality in mind always ask what fish is truly in season and in limited availability. and then go for it!

              1. Thanks to those who responded. We had a wonderful lunch. Highlights included the shimaaji sushi (a type of yellowtail, IIRC) and the toro.

                Though, as my wife said, "this is like flying business class; after this, I don't know how I'll eat at a regular sushi place again for a while."