Kusakabe's Omakase Sushi Experience, in PicturesBy Virginia Miller | July 9, 2014 By Virginia Miller | July 9, 2014
Imagine you're at a blond-wood, intimate, 30-seat sushi bar that offers only omakase/chef's choice menus. Served in the kaiseki style — which is a multicourse meal incorporating cooked and raw elements — each bite or dish comes out as a shining example of purity, perfection and flavor. You're served clean, overflowing glasses of sake from gracious servers, surrounded by a mostly in-the-know Japanese clientele. No, this is not Tokyo but San Francisco. You're sitting at Kusakabe, one of our most exciting new sushi restaurants, though it's only weeks old.
In the shadow of the TransAmerica Building, Mitsunori (aka Nori) Kusakabe opened his restaurant in late May. A favorite chef of ours for many years at legendary Sushi Ran in Sausalito, he runs his new sushi temple with general manager Daisuke Miyake, in a space that's left little to remind of its former inhabitant, Machka. There's but one menu nightly ($95 without drinks), with à la carte options or desserts available to add on post-omakase.
We recently sidled up to the sushi bar to watch the Kusakabe team wield blow torches and impressive knives in the Zen-like space. For us, this is set to be a great among the omakase sushi restaurants in the Bay Area. The quality and taste of the fish, and the range and combination of flavors surpass our experiences at other newcomers like Maruya in the Mission (which, granted, is Tokyo-style Edomae sushi, but is a similarly priced omakase). Here are a few highlights. 584 Washington St.; 415-757-0155