The famous fish auction at Tsukiji fish market was closed to tourists when we were in Tokyo. So, our initial plan to visit the sushi/sashimi joints in the market area such as Sushi Dai was abandoned.....also, we enjoyed our morning sleep-in. :) Later on, Tong's Japanese friend who actually work in the Tsukiji area reassured us that Sushi Dai was only OK; the other local friend in food industry in Tsukiji haven't even heard of it before. So we were on a mission to find the best 'budget' sushi we can get.
Midori Zushi is located inside Mark City shopping mall facing Shibuya crossing - one of the world's busiest pedestrian crossing. A clue that you are in the right place is the ridiculous queue outside! After a 45 minute wait, we finally got in.....after many passing thoughts of looking for another dinner spot. We were rewarded for our patience!
Apart from the very fresh and totally awesome sushi/sashimi, Midori is popular with both locals and tourists for its affordability. While most go for the more "budget" friendly combos....we wanted complete control of what we had and went for individual orders. Some orders were massive - for instance the conger eel (anago) sushi was served as a whole eel and giant egg (tamago) sushi was....er, giant-sized. Sushi rice was perfectly cooked and seasoned.
There were several highlights:
(1) Flame-thrower enhanced marbled fattiest fatty tuna sushi -the flame caramalised the top & the tuna had a creamy texture. The meat just crumbles & melts in your mouth as you eat. AWESOME!
(2)the uni (sea urchin roe) sushi - BEST EVER, it was creamy, sweet & best of all, the sweetness lingers on long after you finish the uni.
Here were the rest.....
Salmon & fatty tuna
Fish roe spawned on kelp. Not sure we liked this one: texture of fish roe was crunchy but I found the bitter after-taste of the roe slightly unappealing. Our curiosity prompted us to order this as we have never seen this before.
This was easily the best "budget" sushi I've had and definitely well-worth the wait and repeat visits. It costs us just under Y4000. Our Japanese insider approves too! For those with unlimited budget, may be worthwhile checking out Michelin-starred sushi/sashimi restaurants in Tokyo.
Rating for Cheap Eats: 18/20
By Gastronomic G.
Scores 18 to 20 = *** (3 stars) = World class and close to perfection
Scores 16 to <18 = ** (2 stars) = An exceptional and special dining experience
Scores 15 to <16 = * (1 star) = Very good to great dining experience