When it comes to any sushi experience there is no doubt the single most important ingredient is the rice preparation, and Saito’s rice was perfect! His technique is right-handed, he uses his right hand to grab the rice, as he presses it firmly until he has total control over the rice’s shape, and only then does it reach his left fingers for two turns.
The fish and rice temperature were right on, they melded together, something I thought made Saito’s sushi work so well. There is no doubt, the first premise in any sushi experience is the fish, his quality is first class, and his nikiri is made with dashi and shoyu, a classical combination. Chef Saito brushes his nigiri just before he gently places in front of the client, it has rich umami flavors.
His razor-sharp knife slices the fish, the cuts are well defined with one fell swoop. His style, personality, and his smile make you feel relaxed, the attitude of the sushi chef definitely influences the way you taste, and Saito’s sushi was a dream-like. He works hard, serving 12-clients seated at his counter, the chef is obliged to pre-cut the fish a la minute – it’s a clever idea, the fish has time to warm up and is much more flavourful.
Saito is relaxed, very conversational, his staff attentive, the champagne flows and the mood is joyous. There are no feelings of covid’s strictness except the visible signs of plastic separating the chef from the counter. It was the first time eating covid styled sushi, I wasn’t bothered by the plastic between the chef and the client, and the chef and staff all use masks.
Diligently chef Saito makes his work look effortless, as the mood brightens and clients are clearly enjoying themselves. Saito’s atmosphere is casual, and the focus is on the overall experience – you leave there feeling good. I appreciated his positive attitude, friendly and non-pretentious he ensures his clients are happy, that’s his priority. I watched him work relentlessly serving clients, no one was waiting too long, his tempo is perfect, fish superb, and the overall experience amazing.
Saito’s sushi superb, balanced, and his harmony excellent ~ bravissimo, and no doubt a reservation at sushi Saito is difficult to book despite the supply chain disruption, it is still a prime-time first-class experience. Despite Covid’s nasty ways, awesome sushi, and thanks to my good friend for arranging a “rare” seat at Tokyo’s best.