By Husein Haveliwala
Japanese cuisine has taken the country by storm in the last few years. Sushi is one of the most refined foods you will ever eat and there’s a lot to choose from. LuxeBook lists the ten best sushi restaurants in India.
1. Wasabi by Morimoto, Mumbai
With a place on San Pellegrino’s Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list, this contemporary Japanese restaurant housed in the opulent Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Mumbai, is a class apart. It has been developed by Masaharu Morimoto, the first executive chef of the iconic Nobu in New York. The sushi menu’s star dishes are the California, spicy yellowtail and salmon avocado rolls served with seafood and wasabi. A meal for two costs Rs12,000.
2. Umame, Mumbai
Located in the Eros building at Churchgate, this pan-Asian restaurant with a swanky ambience serves special sushi rolls like the Umame Volcano (tuna, salmon, crabstick, avocado), Wasabi Hit Prawn Roll (wasabi-brushed prawn tempura), Scorpion King Rolls (lobster tempura with red miso and nitsume), Unagi No Kabayaki (eel in nitsume on sushi rice), Spicy Samurai Roll (white asparagus, avocado, cucumber, daikon), and the Edamame Roll (edamame and wasabi pea tempura). You can also order the ‘sushi boat’ assortment here. A meal for two here costs approximately Rs3,000.
3. Guppy, New Delhi
Guppy is a contemporary Japanese bar and kitchen situated in South Delhi’s Lodhi Colony. At this colourful smorgasbord of modern Japanese art and culture, your dining experience begins even before you’re seated. A speciality is the selection of signature Poke Bowls – a Japanese-inspired Hawaiian dish that is basically an exotic preparation sashimi in a bowl. The restaurant also has a sushi and sashimi bar that offers an entire menu of freshly made sushi. The chef here is known for curating innovative dishes that blend Japanese cuisine with seasonal, local ingredients. A meal for two here would cost about Rs2,200.
4. Megu, New Delhi
Set in multiple dining rooms, centred around an opulent Japanese-style hall, this restaurant is housed in the Leela Palace in Chanakyapuri. The restaurant acquires ingredients from all over the world and lets them shine on the plate. The restaurant’s newly appointed head chef, Shimomura Kazuya, is world-renowned for his ability to seamlessly combine modern and traditional Japanese cuisine, which he dramatically displays on the live kitchen counter. The seafood that support the vast sushi and sashimi menus is sourced from the iconic Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo. Options include salmon, tuna, mackerel, squid, shrimp, eel, scallop, and many more. Crowd-favourite and special maki rolls also make the list, along with omakase platters. A meal here costs Rs5,500 for two.
5. Zen, Kolkata
A dining experience at the Zen, a pan-Asian restaurant at The Park Hotel on Park Street, is the one full of theatrics. With an open-style kitchen, the chef’s dramatic cooking process is directly in view. A teppanyaki meal here is the highlight along with California roll, Spicy tuna roll, Prawn tempura roll, Yasai California roll, and Asparagus tempura roll. You will pay about Rs4,000 for two here.
6. Aajisai, Kolkata
For another unique dining experience in Kolkata, head to Aajisai, in the Quest Mall, Ballygunge. While the restaurant has on-table teppanyaki counters, the most fascinating thing about it is its conveyor belt sushi service. Aajisai will whisk you away to the ‘kaiten-zushi’ bars of Tokyo while you watch plates of food glide in front of you. The à la carte dishes arrive on another conveyor belt above. You can also order an authentic bento box. A meal for two costs Rs1,800.
7. Kazé, Bangalore
Offering you gorgeous views of the Garden City, this rooftop resto-bar on Lavelle Road is the most famous for its ambience. Apart from the view, the décor itself has been tastefully done in a contemporary style. However, the menu of this place is the star of the show. A sushi lovers’ paradise, Kazé has an outstanding, sushi menu that consists of five types of sashimi, a 12-piece sashimi platter, seventeen types of nigiri sushi, an 8-piece nigiri platter, a range of hosomaki (thin rolled sushi) and twelve types of futomaki (thick rolled sushi). A meal for two costs about Rs3,000.
8. Edo, Bangalore
Considered the pioneer of Japanese cuisine in India, the master chef of this restaurant is Nariyoshi Nakamura, from Tokyo. The restaurant, located in the ITC Gardenia on Residency Road, offers the Izakaya style of dining, which embodies the popular Japanese after-hours culture where people meet over food and drinks. Edo has the country’s first ‘robata counter’, where chefs prepare barbecue grilled seafood and vegetables in an open-kitchen setup. The highlight of the dining experience at Edo is the sushi counter, backed by a stone waterfall, where chef Nakamura and his team can be seen slicing fresh slivers of sashimi and rolling maki rolls and placing them directly on your plate. Edo specialises in the kaiseki-style cuisine, which is a traditional course-by-course meal comprised of skilfully crafted dishes. The menu has three fantastic set-menus, a vegetarian and non-vegetarian bento box, an extensive sashimi, makizushi, signature sushi roll, and a sushi platter. A meal at Edo will cost you Rs4,000 for two people.
9. Ohm, Hyderabad
A restaurant in the Avasa Hotel in Madhapur, Ohm is known for its experimental and contemporary twists to pan-Asian cuisine. The restaurant’s suave interiors with mood-lighting offer a perfect setting for a quiet meal. With the most extensive sashimi menu in the city; Ohm is Hyderabad’s sushi heaven. The ‘Ohm Sashimi’ is a platter of hamachi, tuna and salmon sashimi. Signature rolls from the sushi menu are the Unagi uramaki with salmon and crab roll, the Fried soft-shell crab roll, and the Edamame black rice roll. You will pay roughly Rs3,000 for two people here.
10. Zega, Hyderabad
This Asian restaurant in the Sheraton Hyderabad Hotel in Gachibowli specialises in sushi. Overlooking the city’s rocky terrain, with a view of the modern office structures of IT MNCs, the easy-going yet classy ambience of Zega makes for a perfect working-lunch setting. A good selection of sashimi, uramaki, maki, and nigiri is made better with the availability of vegetarian and non-vegetarian platters, and even a 20-piece ‘Make Your Own Platter’ option. A meal for two costs Rs2,000.