This is not a famous sushi restaurant but in Ginza, you have to be of some substance to be able to survive for more than 20 years.
Ginza is one of the most popular sushi spots in Tokyo visited by international celebrities, politicians and tourists alike. There are 14 sushi restaurants that won Michelin stars in 2019 alone in Ginza, including the reverent Sukiyabashi Jiro. While it will take some logistical planning to dine at one of these stellar sushi-ya, there are still plenty of good sushis around, like Sushi Ginza Aida, which remained a crowd favourite in many online polls.
Sushi Ginza Aida is famous for its tofu ryorui as much as its affordable sushi. It does not cut corners like the chain stores (I shall not name any here), and offers an authentic itamae sushi experience with each piece of sushi made a la minute.
As a result of the pandemic, there are these acrylic screens between the seats that makes it perfect for couples to come and enjoy their sushis and engage in small talks without interfering others at the itamae.
Omakase Seasonal Sushi
Starter – Shira ae 白あえ Mashed Tofu Salad
We started off with a shira ae (mashed tofu salad) which is a classic Japanese salad made from mashed tofu, toasted sesame seeds, and various vegetables. Light and refreshing from the sweltering heat outside.
Sashimi – Tako 蛸 Octopus, Hiramasa 平政 Yellowtail Amberjack
Two types of sashimi was served for lunch, kind of little but you only pay almost half the price of what you normally pay for dinner for the omakase. Despite the lower price, the quality and freshness of the sashimi were not compromised.
Salad – Zuwaikani ズワイガニ Snow Crab
I was surprised they even gave us a portion of the snow crab meat with crab miso, which was really sweet and full of umami.
Grilled – Hamachi Kama はまちのカマ Yellowtail Collar
And the starters continued with a hamachi kama shioyaki (yellowtail collar), a fatty part of the fish that tasted perfect when grilled with salt.
Red Vinegar Shari Nigiri Sushi 赤酢しゃり握り12貫
And the main attraction was the medley of sushi – starting with the simple tuna, and ended with sea urchin. I ordered an a la carte portion of tekka maki, my customary end to a seafood meal in Japan. The sushi was delicious, the shari had the right balance of vinegar and mirin. They used rice from contract farmers, and used two types of vinegars for the shari, an aged red vinegar with unfiltered sake lees and a clear rice vinegar. One fault thought, the rice were squashed too hard for some pieces, a common mistake with less experienced sushi chef.
Chawanmushi Owan 茶碗蒸し お碗 Chawanmushi and Miso Soup
The chawanmushi and miso soup were alright, one cannot find any fault nor merit in them.
The dessert was a trio of small bites – one slice of orange, a block of cream cheese that tasted like Philadelphia, and a single piece of bracken mochi.
At $60, this was really value for money. And the service and atmosphere were comparable to the best sushi-ya around Ginza. No wonder there was long reservation list for lunch and dinner.
Sushi Ginza Aida あい田 本店
1F Ikedo bldg., 7-19, 8-Chome, Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
〒104-0061 東京都中央区銀座8-7-19 イケドビル1F
Tel : +81 (0)3-3574-2241
Visited Jul 2023
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