Tokyo Table Trip

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新冠病毒蔓延,導致需要盡量避免出國旅行——這樣的生活也已是2年過去,想必有許多人都迫切渴望能久違地在東京吃一頓美味絕頂的壽司吧。
畢竟有不少在新冠期間中新開幕的店家,又或者是遺憾歇業的壽司店,感覺眾人口中的「話題壽司店」的成員在這短短2年內也大換血了一番。
在擬定旅行計畫時,或許需要先更新一下餐廳情報,再來好好規劃規劃。
而今天,我便想在此向各位傳授「絕對不會失敗的選店秘訣」——這是我經年累月、吃遍了日本各地的壽司店後方才掌握的一番竅門。
這篇文章乃是永久保存版,希望各位在久違的日本旅行之際,能將此作為選擇壽司店的一個參考依據。請務必閱讀到最後!

Data

Step1. 選定目標價位

A. 5,000日幣以下的大眾壽司店
B. 5,000日幣~8,000日幣的平價壽司店
C. 8,000日幣~15,000日幣的中階壽司店
D. 15,000日幣以上的高級壽司店

A.的選項中,包含了如:連鎖壽司店〔美登利壽司、すしざんまい(壽司三昧)等等〕,以及迴轉壽司店〔あきんどスシロー(商人壽司郎)、はま寿司(濱壽司)等等〕。
如果重視味道,就選連鎖壽司店。如果重視娛樂性,就選迴轉壽司店。
近年來的迴轉壽司可謂多采多姿五花八門,會以新幹線的模型來輸送壽司,或者提供品質頗高的烏龍麵、拉麵等等,非常推薦帶著小孩的一家人,以及希望享受居酒屋式服務的客人們。

而格外難選的,則是B的平價壽司店與C的中階壽司店。
能讓人感到物超所值的店家可謂少之又少,如果未經仔細調查,僅憑直覺隨意挑選的話,那幾乎100%會「踩雷」。
這一類的良店,由於常客反感顧客流量增加,通常並不會在網上公開店家的相關情報,故而知名度較低;即使上日本的美食網站「Tabelog」查詢,也難以看見它們在排名上佔有一席之地。
如果無論如何都想去價格便宜卻正宗而美味,鮮為人知的好店,那麼唯一的方法應該就是找上東京當地的壽司老饕,尋求他們的個別建議了吧。

既然都難得來到日本了,就務必想嚐嚐世界最頂級的壽司——若是有這樣的需求,則建議去D的高級壽司店。
近5年,自名店學藝出師的年輕師傅所帶來的開店潮接一波,也有此影響,店家間的顧客爭奪戰越加白熱化,造成的結果便是高級壽司店的味道在整體上也跟著逐漸進步。

但另一方面,伴隨市場盛行,價位也隨之細分化為:15,000~20,000日幣的「CP值取勝店」、20,000~30,000日幣的「所謂的正宗江戶前壽司店」、30,000日幣以上的「頂級江戶前壽司店」,要挑選心儀店家的難度可謂是增長了不少。
都要為一餐一飯花費不斐的金額了,那麼最好還是先仔細調查每間店的特徵(如壽司師傅的背景、壽司的風格、用料的品質、店內的氛圍等等),再慎重選擇最符合自己需求的壽司店為佳。

Step2. 選定上門時段

即使都說是「高級店」,其實也涵蓋了各式各樣的風格,這就是當今的日本壽司市場。
實際上,要找到完全符合個人喜好的「心儀店家」,確實需要一定的經驗。
要盡量不給胃與錢包帶來太大負擔,又要尋覓今後想反覆上門的店家——若要達成這樣的目標,那就必須活用各家店所提供的優惠午餐了。
偶爾會聽見高級壽司店所提供的午餐壽司「壽司飯份量很小」、「食材品質較為低劣」這種毫無根據的謠言,但全是信口雌黃。

套餐的份量(壽司數量)確實會比較少,但午餐壽司的魅力便在於能以不到一半的價格,享用到晚餐時要價35,000日幣以上的超一流餐廳的壽司。
如果會在東京逗留一段期間,那麼晚上便排些「不會出錯的選項」,如:已知的心儀店家,或者憧憬多時的名店等等;
而午餐就挑戰一些「全新店家」、「與眾不同的店家」以豐富自己的閱歷,這也不失為一種很好的享受方法。

Step3. 選定壽司風格

比起任何要素,最影響滿意度的,毋庸置疑都還是「那間店的壽司是否讓自己感到美味了?」
但卻很少人知道,你判定「美味」的第一關鍵要素,其實並非用料(=魚)的好壞,而是壽司飯的味道是否符合個人喜好。

順帶一提,東京壽司店的壽司飯風格,大致可以分為以下6種:

1.すきやばし次郎(數寄屋橋次郎)風格的壽司飯:壽司飯以米醋與較多鹽巴製成,其特徵為米醋的鮮明酸味。
2. はしぐち(橋口)風格的壽司飯:壽司飯以少量米醋與鹽巴製成,較突出米飯本身的滋味,風味高雅。
3. 新橋しみづ(新橋清水)風格的壽司飯:壽司飯以赤醋與較多鹽巴製成,其特徵為赤醋所帶來的濃厚酸味。
4. すし匠(壽司匠)風格的壽司飯:根據食材而靈活選用赤醋・米醋2種基底的壽司飯,2種壽司飯的用鹽量均較少,味道上的主張並不過份強烈。
5. ほかけ(帆掛)風格的壽司飯:所謂「老字號壽司店」的傳統風格的壽司飯。使用赤醋、鹽巴與少量砂糖,酸味不重,且能品嚐到砂糖帶來的一絲甘甜。
6. 其餘的近年主流:混合調製赤醋與米醋,一併使用。因每間店的調製比例不同,導致帶來的酸味也各有特色。最近的流行趨勢乃是不添加一丁點砂糖,並使用煮得較硬的米飯。

如果已經十分瞭解自己的喜好了,就切記選擇壽司飯合自己心意的店家;
如果還不清楚自己的喜好,那就多去嘗試各式各樣的壽司飯。
要選出一間能令自己滿意的壽司店,終極秘訣就是「知彼先知己」,在瞭解店家前先瞭解自己的喜好,這才是最重要的。

Step4. 選定壽司店

選好了上門時段(午餐?還是晚餐?),以及想嘗試的壽司風格(壽司飯的味道),下一步就終於來到挑選店家的階段了。
如果看得懂日文,那麼大量翻閱Tabelog上大家寫下的評價,進而選出最合適的店家,這也是一個可行的方法;然而對外國旅客而言,看不懂日語評價經常會是一個巨大的痛點。

作為一些比較實際的解決辦法,有:
・閱讀母語撰寫的旅遊書
・閱讀母語撰寫的部落格
・搜尋精通壽司的instagrammer,確認其貼文內容
・閱讀Tripadvisor等國際性平台上的評價
・以Google搜尋相關資料

等等,以上所列舉出的應該會是主要的方法,但其中特別需要留意的是「Google搜尋」。
如果搜尋「Sushi Tokyo」,在搜尋結果中優先顯示的媒體所發表的文章(像是30 best sushi restaurants you should visit in Tokyo……)
幾乎都是由根本沒去過幾間店的徹頭徹尾的外行人所撰寫的,完全不值得對飲食十分講究的各位參考。
切勿對知名媒體所提供的情報囫圇吞棗,而是傾聽自己周遭可信賴的人的意見(家人、友人,或者在社群媒體上因飲食而結交的網友),我認為這才是穩妥之策。

另外,特別是外國旅客在選店之時,還要注意以下幾點:
・店內是否有會說英文的服務員?
・店內是否允許拍照?(最近有不少店家都禁止拍照了。畢竟難得旅行一趟,肯定會想拍照留念吧)
・是否能坐吧台位?(一旦被帶去餐桌位,壽司的風味便會減半)
・是否會由這間店的招牌大廚——店主師傅來親自握壽司,而非第二把手?(這比什麼都重要!)
這些也都是關乎滿意度的重要因素,希望可以盡量在事前就仔細確認過一遍。

Step5. 瞭解當季魚

如果選好目標店家了,那麼95%的準備就都已經做好了!
再來,就只剩下在即將上門品嚐之時,為了盡情享受這一趟壽司之旅,作為最終階段的準備,可以來預習預習當天大概率會被端上桌的「食材(=魚)」。

壽司店所提供的食材,大致上可分為:
1. 初上市:在今年第一次被捕獲的魚(也被稱為「初物」)
2. 盛產期:流通量增加,時期上最好吃的魚
3. 遺留期:即將停止販賣流通的魚

這3類。

在日本這裡,並非只有「盛產期」的魚才是上等食材,
初物因「能延長75天壽命」的好寓意而廣受喜愛,
遺留期的魚也因「珍惜最後時光,遙想下個春秋」這層意義而備受重視,
希望大家可以知道:在這裡,存在著形形色色的享受季節的方法。
在自己要上門品嚐壽司的季節,有什麼樣的魚將迎來「初上市」、「盛產期」、「遺留期」呢?哪怕只是稍微瞭解一下這些情報,當天端上桌的壽司,想必都會變得更加耐人尋味吧。

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Comments Icon comments 20b52f1dd59ace07b92433da2a385e6f7392eb2937032eebc2a0bd0b67c69516 5


ChuToroZuke

Great article! Thank you so much, learned a few things myself!

I cannot stress the point enough of doing more research on your own before deciding on the restaurant you want to try and make reservations for. While it is tempting to try the hard to book restaurants heavily favored and frequented by VIP instagrammers / repeat customers, you may or may not end up disappointed if you end up going if your tastes do not align (or feel forced to have to like it).

You also need to know your own preferences well enough, and understand the styles / approach of each restaurant. Some will do exciting and new things, while some could be doing variations on a theme in their own unique way that you may or may not enjoy. I have found that from visiting a few very popular restaurants back in 2019, that their style did not really suit me. Although I have also tried some new places where the style was modern and perhaps a bit fusion, and some offerings were surprisingly enjoyable. But I took that as a learning experience. This is why sushi is such a personal matter and is very subjective. Sometimes you have to try as many styles as possible so you can learn and understand, and develop your sense of taste and preference. Also great advice to go out of your comfort zone to try some lesser known or obscure places. I have had some fantastic experiences thanks to Saito san and this board's recommendations, as a result of trying such places that required me to go somewhere tourists might not go or consider (because they are not famous) but are enjoyed by locals for different reasons. Some of the places and restaurant owners may value your visit even more because they don't normally get non local customers. If you keep an open mind, put in effort, show kindness in return for their hospitality, you might be rewarded. And this also applies to restaurants in Tokyo or other parts of Japan that are not sushi.

6 个月 ago 1654924701

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Shi

Well said - thank you for expressing this sentiment ChuToroZuke and to Saito san for the informative writeup!

6 个月 ago 1655535484
Tonk

mirugai

Very well put. I too have sometimes been mildly disappointed in some (not all) of the popular restaurants I've tried. I find that with a bit of thoughtful research in advance it's quite possible to trust one's own instincts about whether a place will be a good match. Following those instincts has served me so much better than trying to follow any crowd!

5 个月 ago 1658261208

guest

thanks for sharing, saito san.

6 个月 ago 1654996470

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guest

great article. thank you.

only issue is Japan's borders for tourists to visit and travel freely (not stuck with tour groups) doesn't seem to be opening up any time soon. seems like at least another 12 months.

6 个月 ago 1654663636

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guest

How did you come up with "at least another 12 months"? My crystal ball tells me that after the House of Councillors elections in July, Kishida will call the ridiculous guided tours experiment a great success and allow individual tourism to resume soon after. All of the current restrictions are in place strictly for show, to appease voters.

6 个月 ago 1654784507
User default d6f8776075bbcbf91b3886fd7b0aeb86c94956e290bd9b9223466618a8cd47a2

guest

i came up with it the same way that you come up with Japan will be opened soon after July. i honestly believe mine is more likely. and i'm referring to free tourism without any restrictions or quarantines etc.

6 个月 ago 1654841924
Img 3465

Wanderlusting

I think tourism with minimal restrictions will be sooner approx 3rd/4th quarter this year rather than in 12 months. My crystal ball is the best.

6 个月 ago 1654845480
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guest

lol

6 个月 ago 1654847984
User default d6f8776075bbcbf91b3886fd7b0aeb86c94956e290bd9b9223466618a8cd47a2

guest

Agreed with above, I believe they will open in Q3. They would make a absolute killing with the tourists bringing in the weak yen. No reason to delay further.

6 个月 ago 1654849791
User default d6f8776075bbcbf91b3886fd7b0aeb86c94956e290bd9b9223466618a8cd47a2

guest

You didn't provide a reason for your thought process, though. My thought process is that the current restrictions are politically motivated. Many voters in Japan are older, and the older population is strongly in support of a gaijin tourism ban. Kishida doesn't want to piss off those voters before the July election. After the election, there's no reason to keep the tourism ban in place. What is your reasoning for another 12 months?

6 个月 ago 1654870396

guest

Very nice and informative article, saito-san!

6 个月 ago 1654660174

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Leo Saito

chief editor, TokyoTableTrip

Created good content to guide everyone in their selection of sushi restaurants.

6 个月 ago 1654652603

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