I watched the documentary “Jiro Dreams of Sushi” over the weekend. It’s available via Netflix. It’s a very interesting (if slowly paced) movie about one man, 86 year old Sushi Master Jiro Ono, and his driving passion to create the world’s greatest sushi.
The care Jiro takes in preparation of his sushi is remarkable. The presentation to the customer is simplicity itself. The family dynamic of the restaurant is very interesting.
I applaud him for his remarkable life and effort but I’m never going to eat at his restaurant.
Don’t get me wrong – I LOVE sushi. I can eat a LOT of sushi. But Ono’s Michelin three star rated restaurant is in the basement of a building in the Ginza section of Tokyo – I’m unlikely to ever get back to Tokyo as much as I would love to.
Sukiyabashi Jiro also requires reservations be made three months in advance (that may partly be because the restaurant only seats 10 people at the sushi bar). And, as many people point out, the cost of the meal starts at $300 per person and rapidly goes up from there.
I’m not a chepskate but I find it hard to believe that even the greatest sushi in the world is worth that kind of money.
But what makes it worse is the speed at which you are expected to eat your meal. Every article I’ve seen on the restuarant always remarks on the 15-20 minutes you are “allowed” to eat your meal before you are moved on for the next customers.
I will take my own damn sweet time eating bad steak at a Chili’s – and I have. I will take my own damn sweet time eating shepherd’s pie at my local pub – and I have. I will take my own damn sweet time eating a 10 course meal at one of the most expensive restaurants in Las Vegas – and I have.
I sure as hell won’t be made to rush and eat faster by an 86 year old Japanese man who just took $300+ dollars from me and each of my friends for a 20 minute meal.
If I want “fast” food, Tokyo has all kinds of MacDonalds.