If you though you heard about Sushi Man, that’s right – it’s the same Sushi Man from Hong Kong and they have come to Shenzhen.
If you think I’m in Japan again, think again. This is Shenzhen and this über popular sushi restaurant is the first outpost this side of border by the now seminary Sushi Man group of high-end sushi restaurants in Hong Kong located in unusual places like Yuen Long.
Sushi Man is brainchild of Chef Leung Man-Ho – a young and passionate sushi chef who was trained in Hong Kong and, according to him, spent a lot of money eating at all of the sushi restaurants in Ginza on a trip once to improve his craft. Sushi Man opened in Yuen Long in 2015 as one of the few high-end Omakase restaurants in New Territories.
The concept is omakase, i.e. your fate is left in the hands of the chef (and whatever they are serving that day). We were there for their lunch omakase, which is a fraction of the cost of their dinner and featured 12 or 16 pieces of Edomae-style sushi.
First Course – Chawanmushi
It was quite unusual to start the meal with a chawanmushi – but these chefs were not classically trained a sushi restaurant in Ginza so the sequence of the courses was not so strict. Instead to the usual chawanmushi, this was seaweed chawanmishi with smooth, custardy steamed egg and the taste of the sea from the nori. The chawanmushi changes according to the season and the fish they get according to our chef.
Second Course – Appetisers
The second course consisted of two servings of sashimi and a vinegared dish.
Room temperature, but still firm and fresh. We preferred out sashimi colder, but this would be the right temperature to serve them to bring out the flavours of the fish.
The octopus was really tender and came with a small bob of wasabi or ginger. These condiments gave the octopus two totally different flavours.
And if you don’t like octopus, you get fresh bonito – this I had not had outside of Japan. In the fall, bonito fattened up and is full of umami. It is served almost always with grated ginger and chopped scallions, the skin was aburi-ed to release the oil.
Mozuku is a brown type of seaweed that is the pride of Okinawa. 99% of the world’s production is made in the Southern archipelago of Japan, known for being the place with the longest human life expectancy. It was served in its natural form in ponzu vinegar.
The Sushi Course
Our lunch omakase came as either a 12-piece or 16-piece sushi course. The first 8 pieces are the same. You pay an upgrade and then the tuna are different using wild-caught bluefin tuna instead of the farmed version. The final 4 pieces are the same.
It was quite strange to start with hotate (scallops) as the sweetness and flavours can be quite powerful.
Next up, two pieces of toro that would melt in your mouth if you have opted to go for the wild-caught bluefin tuna upgrade.
And if you have not opted for the wild-caught bluefin tuna upgrade, you get the standard farmed tuna which was equally delicious as well.
And then 4 more pieces for the 16-piece menu.
The flounder was served in a sheet of nori and handed directly over to you. The flounder was fatty at this point in the season and the aburi released all those omega fatty acids. Deliciously warm and only available to the 16-piece set.
Finally, the last three pieces. The ikura was different from the usual served elsewhere because they were marinated in house with their own sweetened soy sauce. And the tamago was one of the best I have tasted outside of Japan, with the addition of white bait in the batter. Most of the sushi places outside of Japan skipped this step.
I got to mention about the shari even though I forgot to take a picture. They used a brown vinegar instead of the usual clear rice vinegar that gave the shari a reddish-brown appearance.
Special Order – Uni
We were so intrigue by what the next group was eating – three young persons not older than 25 ordering the dinner omakase at ¥2180 per person. They had this special uni and abalone appetiser, with pieces of really yummy looking uni on top of a wriggling abalone sashimi.
We were just tempted to add the sea urchin to our omakase as a la carte orders just to have a taste of those huge pieces of sea urchin.
This is very decadent sea urchin hand roll that’s made up of three types of sea urchins from three different production areas. The chef explained that Hokkaido is now the largest producer of processed sea urchin, but not all sea urchins are from Hokkaido. For example, the large pieces on the top of the hand roll were from New Brunswick, Canada but processed in Hokkaido. It is not as sweet or creamy as the Bafun variety, but what it lacks in flavour it compensates with size.
And finally, a cup of hot soup. No, they did not serve a standard misoshiru. Instead, it was a slow-boiled fish bone soup that reminded me of a double-boiled Cantonese soup. It was quite heavy and fishy, but my guests seemed to love this instead of the usual miso soup. Frankly, I can only stand that much innovation in one meal, please give me my miso soup.
I skipped the dessert and got a cup of espresso instead. But if you are wondering, it’s matcha ice cream.
To be honest, we “trialed” their lunch because we had too many scary encounters of so-called high-end sushi and Japanese restaurant in this nouveau riche city of Shenzhen that would blow a hole in your wallet without a meal to match.
Just watch the three youngsters that sat next to us – their meal each cost three times of what we paid together! However, we were convinced by the end of lunch that we all agreed to come for dinner when we had the chance.
While this may not substitute a trip to Tokyo, Sushi Man delivers solid sushi that is excellent while it is great for those residing in Shenzhen who will no longer have to trek to Hong Kong for quality sushi!
Sushi Man 鮨文
China, Guangdong Province, Shenzhen, Fuhua District
Tel : +86 153 234 58371
Date Visited : Nov 2020