The Most Exclusive Sushi Restaurants in Tokyo (January 2020)

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Last year, we shared an article on the highly-rated Yakiniku restaurants in Tokyo among local Japanese. The article has been quite popular since then. Today, we’ll share the list of genuinely popular (and the most exclusive, I should say) Sushi restaurants in Tokyo among local Japanese people.

Sushi Sugita, Image from eater.com

As was the case for Yakiniku restaurants, you’d be surprised how the highly-rated restaurants on Tabelog are different than the ones that are ranked high on TripAdvisor (and therefore often visited by foreign tourists.)

But before that, keep in mind:

  1. These restaurants are extremely difficult to make reservations, even for Japanese locals. Especially the ones in Top 10 to 15 would require reservations a few months or longer in advance.

  2. Many, if not all, of these high-end sushi places, do not have English menus, and the chefs speak Japanese only. So it’s recommended making a reservation through a concierge or, if possible, going with a Japanese friend (to fully understand the food served, etc.)

  3. The price point per customer is 30,000 Yen ($270 U.S.) or above. Many accept cash only.

  4. On Tabelog, anything above 3.50 or higher is considered a “great” restaurant, and above 4.00 is considered “legendary.”

  5. Anything above 4.50 is considered “miraculous” or “once in a lifetime” type of place. So if you’re visiting Tokyo for the first and the last time in life, it may worth considering based on this list.

Mitani, Yotsuya

Tabelog’s Top 20 Sushi in Tokyo (January 3rd, 2020 )

  1. Sugita (Nihonbashi Kakigaracho), Sui-Tengu-Mae
  2. Sushi Saito, Roppongi-Icchome
  3. Sushi Namba, Hibiya
  4. Amamoto (Higashi Azabu), Akabane-Bashi
  5. Sushi Hashiguchi, Akasaka-Mitsuke
  6. Sawada, Ginza
  7. Sushi Kimura, Futago-Tamagawa
  8. Sushi Takamitsu, Naka-Meguro
  9. Sushi Arai, Shimbashi
  10. Mitani, Yotsuya
  11. Hatsunezushi, Kamata
  12. Sushi Namba (Asagaya), Asagaya
  13. Sushi-Sho, Yotsuya
  14. Kiyota, Ginza
  15. Sushi Fujinaga, Azabu Juban
  16. Sushi Hashimoto, Shin-Tomicho
  17. Umi, Gaien-Mae
  18. Sushi-Sho Saito, Akasaka-Mitsuke
  19. Sushi Tokami, Uchi-Saiwai-Cho
  20. Harutaka, Uchi-Saiwai-Cho
Sushi Saito, Image from luxeat.com

Note:

These Sushi restaurants are so exclusive that they usually require much time and effort to make reservations and, of course, enough budget. Even for a Japanese local based in Tokyo for many years, it’s normal that a person has never been to any of them. So don’t feel bad even if you don’t get a chance to visit these places while you’re in Japan.

Sushi in Tokyo are generally quite good (as it’s a highly competitive market), and these ratings are subjective at the end of the day. Use it as one of your reference points, besides TripAdvisor, Google Maps, Michelline, Blogs, etc.

Kiyota, Ginza

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