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Jun 8, 2013 04:18 PM

Early Summer 2013 Omakase at Shunji: An YASPE (Yet Another Shunji Pictorial Essay) Production

[For pictures with in-line captions, and the ability to view large-size photos, please visit]

Last night, I went back to Shunji after just a one week break. This is NOT something that I can afford to do all the time (or even some of the time), but the timing worked out for me to go two weeks in a row, and I couldn't pass up the opportunity. And chrishei, being my "sidekick" (his word, not mine), accompanied me.

Since I just did a detailed review of my omakase from last week (, I'm going to crib J.L.'s style and let the photos speak for themselves (but I'll answer any questions about the dishes in comments below).


1. Specials Board
2. Mozuku
3. Tai Somen
4. Chawanmushi w/Summer Truffle & Uni
5. Aoyagi & Ebi Nutaae
6. Shunji Dispatching an Ise-Ebi (Japanese Spiny Lobster)
7. Live Ise-Ebi Head
8. Arugula Salad w/Lobster & Bleu Cheese
9. Live Ise-Ebi Sashimi
10. Kanpachi Sashimi w/Su-Miso & Ponzu Gelee
11. Kawagishi Toro & Bafun Uni
12. Ishidai, Madai, Higesori Dai
13. Sauteed Shiitake & Nagareko
14. Fried Okoze (Sculpin)
15. Suzuki Yaki
16. Shunji Preparing Live Hirame Sashimi (For Other Guests)
17. Okoze
18. Live Hirame (From Above)
19. Katsuo
20. Chibiki
21. Kamasu
22. Kohada
23. Marinated salmon
24. Chutoro
25. Maguro Zuke
26. Miso w/Ise-Ebi Head
27. Wagyu
28. Unagi
29. Tamago
30. Uni & Kanpyo Maki
31. Red Miso w/Clams
32. Mentaiko
33. House-Made Lime Ice Cream

(Sorry, no embedded captions this time. Too lazy/tired.)

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    1. re: ipsedixit

      I ask for this on every single visit now. It is a marvel, and I don't even like lime that much.

      1. re: J.L.

        That was my understanding. Thanks.

      2. re: ipsedixit

        J.L. pretty much covered it. I even brought one home for my wife. They don't have to-go containers, so I took it home in the ramekin, which I now have to return. At least I'll have an excuse to go back. ;-)

          1. re: PeterCC

            You're in good with the chef when...

            1. re: PeterCC

              I'm bad. I still have like 3 of his porcelain bowls at my house I have yet to return... :-P (But we likes the Shunji takeout so much too!)

              1. re: J.L.

                Impressive. How often do you do Shunji takeout? Has it supplanted SUGARFISH?

          2. I just realized I hadn't posted the damage, so I'll "kevin" myself... This was ~$200 just for the food, pre-tax. Maybe a little more. The live Chilean ise-ebi probably wasn't cheap (understatement) but was at least split between chrishei and I.

            You're letting me down, kevin. ;-) Hey, where is kevin anyway?

            22 Replies
            1. re: PeterCC

              Sorry, Pete. Sometimes I can't be on the site at all times. Gotta be on the job site once in a while.

              1. re: PeterCC

                My apologies.

                There have been so many different threads on Shunji's the past few days that I just couldn't keep up.


                Now I really want to go too.

                But yeah, I don't care for lemon-lime desserts. So the chocolate mousse will have to do the trick as always.

                1. re: PeterCC

                  Damn. 200 per person ? you are even one-upping Mr. JL.

                  1. re: kevin

                    We come at the king, we best not miss...

                    1. re: kevin

                      Yikes. @ $200 per person before tax and tip, isn't that inbetween Urasawa and more expensive than Mori (which was pretty excellent)? Is it worth it?

                      1. re: chowseeker1999

                        I think people need to gauge that for themselves. That is not typically what I spend there, but chrishei and I went a little crazy, I guess. Plus it depends on the ingredients, the whole fried okoze, and (especially) the live Chilean Japanese spiny lobster were premiums.

                        1. re: PeterCC

                          How much was the live Chilean Japanese spiny lobsters ?

                          Or how much was the premium on those suckers ?


                          1. re: kevin

                            I don't know, it was part of the omakase and didn't ask the a la carte pricing. Sorry. I'm guesstimating that it's probably at least $50-$60.

                            How much was your lobster three-way (or was it four-way), if you recall?

                            1. re: PeterCC

                              It was 75 to 100 upcharge. When I asked. Not cheap.

                              1. re: kevin

                                I wouldn't be surprised if the live spiny lobster was in that range too...

                                1. re: PeterCC

                                  Do you happen to have a quick link to the picture of the Chinese spiny lobsters ?

                                  1. re: kevin

                                    The Japanese spiny lobsters from Chile is posted on the Shunji Facebook page: Not sure about Chinese spiny lobsters unless they were mentioned in one of those Sea Harbour or Elite threads...

                                    1. re: PeterCC

                                      My bad.

                                      Why did I say Chinese instead of Chile ?

                                      1. re: PeterCC

                                        Excessive, uncontrollable brain farts.

                                        1. re: PeterCC

                                          Hmm, each one looks tiny. Are you supposed to eat a few of these suckers per person ???? It looks like an oversized langoustino.

                                            1. re: PeterCC

                                              The man himself deep contemplation of his craft.

                                              Beautiful picture.

                                              I also forgot to mention that Shunji is one cool dude too.

                            2. re: chowseeker1999

                              "isn't that inbetween Urasawa and more expensive than Mori (which was pretty excellent)? "

                              Mori and Shunji seem to be pretty similar price wise - just depends on how much of the rare stuff you eat/drink.

                              1. re: ns1

                                Well, at Mori, I doubt you wish usally have a dish that by itself would garner a 50 to 90 charge.

                                1. re: kevin

                                  I highly suspect a live spiny lobster @ mori would run the same, no?

                                  1. re: ns1

                                    Oh, yes, I would guess so.

                                    I think what I meant was that I don't think Mori would serve a whole slew of dishes (beyond the tofu and a couple other cooked dishes) beyond their sushi/sashimi.

                                    Maybe I'm wrong on that note.

                                    Usually, read: always, I stick to just the sushi at Mori and one time I sprung for the homemade tofu appetizer as well as the whipped tofu dessert with black sugar sauce.

                        2. Yeah, I loved the Ise Ebe lobster three ways, tartare (my have) followed by the tempura and sashimi.

                          And the chuwan mushi with summer truffles and uni is beyond great.

                          so was the other half dozen pieces of sushi, though these were made by one of his chefs not shunji personally, and obviously when shunji makes it its that much better.

                          the bleu cheese and purple potato ball.

                          and a chocolate mousse.

                          oh, and the lobster head in miso soup at the end, fourth way.

                          not cheap even though i probably didn't even have half the number of dishes you you had so it would make sense that your meals would even be 225 to 240 for the dishes you had.

                          how many individual pieces of sushi did you have from your original post here, more than 20 ?

                          anyhow, as always, a great meal, if still very expensive.

                          17 Replies
                          1. re: kevin

                            Glad you had a great (if expensive) meal! Did you eat solo? Re: Cost--Remember that chrishei and I split the ise ebi and the fried whole okoze, so the cost of those dishes were split as well.

                            I count 14 pieces of sushi for this last meal there--16, if you count the individual uni/kanpyo maki pieces--I only had one of the unagi pieces pictured.

                            1. re: PeterCC

                              Yeah, I downed the Ise Ebi on my own, and I would not have wanted to part with any of it. :)

                              I think I had 6 or maybe 7 pieces topps, but i may have lost track.

                              And that custard with the summer truffles: excellent.

                              1. re: kevin

                                What was your damage for 1 person?

                                1. re: ns1

                                  A C-note, before tax and tip.

                                  1. re: kevin

                                    That's a good price. Did you get the tasting menu, or a limited omakase, or a la carte? Wondering how much the ise ebi was on its own if it was itemized on your bill.

                                    1. re: PeterCC

                                      I guess it worked out to a limited omakase (?) because I didn't specificy anything except that i had to have that baby tiny spiny lobster.

                                      Though also the ise ebi may have been smaller to suit one person.

                                      But then again, I am a glutton.

                                      1. re: kevin

                                        next time, i really want to try that truffle gohan too.

                                        1. re: kevin

                                          Me too, but he said it's too big for one person and rather large even for two. Plus, with the amount of truffles, I think that would severely increase your bill, unless that's all you had, which would probably be a fantastic meal of just one course!

                                          1. re: PeterCC

                                            That's what he *said* but it would not have been difficult finishing the entire thing. So good...

                                            1. re: Porthos

                                              I think he underestimates us Chowhounds' eating capacities...

                                              1. re: PeterCC

                                                Eating capacity, yes. But I probably would not want to drop a couple of C-notes on that dish alone.

                                              2. re: Porthos

                                                Besides rice and liberal shavings of truffles, what else is in there ?

                                                1. re: kevin

                                                  There are the side items like the egg yolk and the ikura. Porthos and J.L., being the two who've actually had it, will have to give more details.

                                                  1. re: PeterCC

                                                    If I'm not mistaken, I did see him serving it to about a party of four a few months back, and it was a huge pot that he was stirring it in, if I'm not mistaken.

                                                    But it sure looked great.

                                                    And it was not mentioned on the chalkboard menu either.

                                                    Oh, boy. I am going to have to try it soon.

                                                    Please report back if you try it before me.

                                                    And thanks for the tip on the chawan mushi and the baby spiny lobsters.

                                  2. re: kevin

                                    Do you put it on your house account?

                                    1. re: Ciao Bob

                                      I sure wish.

                                      But I am only a mere mortal.

                                      Unlike some on this board. :)