Friday, August 13, 2010

Masa Restaurant, New York, Perhaps North America's Best Japanese Experience

Masa is, in my opinion, perhaps North America's best Japanese dining experience. I was not allowed to take photos so there is no pictorial record of my experience. The meal costs $450.00 per person, before taxes, saki or wine and gratuities, but, the cost is on par with the best kaiseki or sushi restaurants in Japan, because of the freshness and sourcing of the food elements.

When one enters, and we went for lunch, the elegant entrance to a very quiet and small, formal space prepares one for the focused experience to come.

We enjoyed the Masa Omakase Menu. There is no selection. The presentation of the food and the dishware selected is of paramount importance. The pristine fish were impeccably fresh. Although I have had this quality of fish in Japan, it is a truly rare experience in North America.

The following dishes were presented to us in this order.


unagi with japanese cucumber
toro tartare topped with sevruga caviar (a remarkable combination)
suzuki (japanese sea bass) sashimi
soft shelled crab with yomogi greens
shirauo in sizzling garlic oil
omi (a variety of wagyu) beef tataki
hamo (pike) nabe

Sushi Courses

toro (the fatty part of bluefin tuna)
shimaaji (island jack fish)
hirame (fluke)
tai (sea bream)
kinme (deep sea snapper)
shiitake (mushroom)
ika (squid)
amaebi (sweet shrimp)
aoyagi (orange clam)
grilled toro suji (grilled toro sinew)
aji (horse mackerel)
kuruma ebi (cooked shrimp)
akamutsu (fatty deep sea snapper)
anago (sea eel)
unagi (fresh water eel)
uni (sea urchin)
tako (octopus)
summer truffle ball
negi toro (fatty blue fin tuna with chopped green onion) roll
ume (Japanese plum) shiso lotus wrap


grape fruit granite

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