I didn't think it was possible to eat bad sushi in Japan, but our trip to Tokyo proved me so so wrong. Shockingly enough, the most awful sushi we've had in a long long time was at a renowned chain sushi-ya, Sushi Zanmai. Granted, it's dirt-cheap, but the fish was far from still-squirming fresh, and execution was clumsy and amateur-ish. What a terrible waste.
Having heard the stories of how Sushizanmai broke the record at a recent tuna auction, we thought, "must-eat the tuna here, sure to be good". Oh boy were we wrong. The Magurozanmai Special (JPY3000), with otoro nigiri, toro nigiri, broiled toro nigiri, negitoro nigiri, and tuna maki, was middling, at best. The knife-work on the slices of fish was unwieldy, you can practically see the jagged edges, and the vinegar-ed rice was packed so loosely the nigiri fell apart even in the steadiest of hands.
The 2-person assorted sashimi Kashimori (JPY2980), with arkshell, sweet prawn, toro, ikura, squid, and yellowtail, fared worse. Save for the tuna which barely passed muster, the rest of the sashimi, despite an attempt to drown them in soy, was waaaaay too fishy. In fact, I (discreetly, of course) spit out the sweet prawn into my tissue to throw away.
The Tempura Moriawase (JPY980) was unrefined - the batter was too thick so instead of being light and crispy, it was oil-soaked and heavy.
The only worthwhile dish, was a Broiled Miso Black Cod (JPY800) which was creamy and a good balance of the sweet and fatty, even if it was riddled with bones.
We were served a complimentary seaweed salad with crabmeat and edamame. Save for the sweet kani, we weren't big fans of this mayo-ed appetizer.
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