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May 28, 2013 01:03 AM

Aiming to be in Tokyo from Dec 28- Dec 31.. Sushi help?

Another year is moving fast and I am planning another trip to Hokkaido at the year end stopping over in Tokyo fro 3-4 nights. This time I am looking to be there from 28th Dec to 31Dec (inclusive)

What are the dining options for a good sushi joint. Looking to do one medium priced and one high end.

Oh and the ability to fit a group of 6 to 8 would be nice.

Previously managed Tsukiji Outer market (including Daiwa) and Sushi Kanesaka in Ginza.

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  1. Too early in the year to say for certain, but that's about the time when most businesses (including most independent restaurants that don't cater to foreign clientele) close for the new year holidays. The 28th is pushing it. Your chances of finding the places you want to go open by the 30th-31st will be minuscule.

    4 Replies
    1. re: E Eto

      Hmm ok thanks! may just go straight to Hokkaido in that case.

      1. re: E Eto

        Most Tokyo restaurants that I want to go to are open at least until the 30th. (Then again, I'm not looking for expensive sushi restaurants or tourist-friendly spots.)

        1. re: Robb S

          Hahaha ok, maybe I should rephrase the question to what's open and worth a visit?

          1. re: asidbyrne

            You can find lots of very nice izakaya, in the budget range of anywhere from Y3,000 - Y10,000 per person. Pretty much anyplace that's in a shopping-dining complex or on a restaurant floor should be open at least until December 30, and many places start to open again from January 2. On the days in between you can generally rely on anyplace located inside a hotel.

            I'd say you'd have much better chances of getting a good meal in Tokyo than Hokkaido during that period.

      2. I agree with Robb S: don't rush to Hokkaido. Tsujiki market is open till the 30th and most sushi shops will stay open until then. The only issue will be trying to make a booking for such a large group during that time.

        According to tabelog, Daisan Harumi, Sushiko Honten, Nishi-Azabu Ishii and Sushi Mao can all take bookings for 8. Sushi Mao may be your best bet as it is located in Hotel Seiyo, so it's sure to be open until the 30th. That said, it's the sister shop of Kanesaka so it may be too similar to what you've already experienced.

        5 Replies
        1. re: wekabeka

          Thanks Robb/wekabeka, what I meant was I would forgo the food in Tokyo and head straight to the slopes =).

          Will give the rest a shot. How early do you think I can make reservations?

          1. re: wekabeka

            Hmm I just checked the Hotel Seiyo website and it says that they are closing on 31 May 2013 (closing for good). Will the Sushi joint move as well?

            1. re: asidbyrne

              Hmm, I had assumed it would just get refurbished and taken over by another hotel group, but it seems Seiyo's parent company is selling the entire site. I checked with the hotel and Sushi Mao will move and re-open under the chef's name 'Sushi Ichiyanagi', on June 22nd. The new shop will be 5 minutes away from its current location at Ginza 1-5-14 (ph: +81-3-3562-5810).

              1. re: asidbyrne

                Well, sushi Ikkyu on 4th floor of Barney's Ginza will be opened during the opening days of Barney's. It is a parent of SushiKo Honten, a bit cheaper, and with a counter. SushiKo Honten Ginza counter is quite small . At sushi Manten, the seating is not that comfortable, location is on a basement of a gallery, but its level is more high level than your average department store sushi. Last year it closed on the 31st at lunch and reopened on the 2nd.
                These two sushi-yasan are quite different regarding price. Sushi Manten diner omakase (very impressive) is at 5250 yens(tax included), sushi Ikkyu is at around 10,000yens to 15,000yens(nigiri set). Sushi Ikkyu supplement pieces are as expensive as sushi Kanesaka, so choose a nigiri set, without wine also better, and stick to it. Or ask before beginning that you want to eat the trilogy maguro.

                1. re: Ninisix

                  Thanks!! Lots of options now. Happy =)

            2. I've had a pretty good sushi meal at Roku Roku inside the Grand Hyatt in Roppongi. They should be open, and can accommodate a large party. Might be a decent backup plan if you don't find anything more exciting open. I had their Kaede Nigiri lunch set (¥5,800) and it was very good. Their dinner sets are priced at ¥9,500 and up.

              1. Try Sushi Yuu in 1-4-15 Nishi Azabu, opposite the embassy of Ghana for the medium range ('o-makase' dinner is about 12,000 yen per person).


                It's run by a young guy called Daisuke, who speaks good English and is always happy to accomodate small groups. His counter seats about 15 people, but he's got 2 separate rooms too if you prefer that. Contact him via FB to see if he's open at that time of the year.

                1. Ok, time to make the reservations.

                  So maybe a little more specific in terms of request.

                  Staying in Shiodome. So somewhere in the Shinbashi/Ginza area would be best.
                  Looking for Sushi Lunch on 29 Dec and 30 Dec.
                  8 pax each time
                  Budget US150/- pax for one meal US250/- for another.

                  Cheaper recommendations always welcome.

                  On that note, I really enjoy eating good fresh uni. Any uni specific restaurants come to mind to try?

                  Will head to Jumbo for their Beef

                  Looking for a good Sukiyaki recommendation as well.


                  2 Replies
                  1. re: asidbyrne

                    Did you look into the half dozen or so restaurants that were already suggested? Seems like people ran Tabelog searches for you when you asked the first time...

                    For uni, I found this goofily named place in Shinbashi. It's called Poseidon, but they use the Japanese character "丼" for "don" meaning "bowl". They specialize in kaisen-don, sashimi rice bowls.


                    1. re: Silverjay

                      @Silverjay, what is your real question ?
                      The period of end new year is too long for me to not have sushi, so yes, I did have sushi last year, and the year before at the end of December... but the fact is even if you look at the net, it won't give you any clue about this year ! I have called 2 sushi-yasan, their only answer was we will know in December.. So yes the question comes every year ! After, I have had lunch at sushi ko honten on a 30th of December, this year the 30th is a monday(closing date), still open on Sunday. Sugiyama-San the 4th generation chef is in the second floor, and even the counter is small you can seat by 8. After, this summer, I have had lunch at sushi Shimon in the Coredo in front of Mitsukoshi (30mn walk distance from Shimbashi), and enjoyed it better than the Ginza main branch. This sushi is open until the 31st of December, at lunch. Please understand that you need to interfer with the chef.. if you don't want less wasabi, less rice, ask for it..and if you want to change one piece for a second piece of uni also you can do it, but to avoid to command pieces per pieces that are awfully expensive, choose a menu, and then just communicate.. these sushi-yasan do have staff that speak English.