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View Full Version : Has anyone seen Jiro Dreams of Sushi?



ayeung74
10-09-2012, 12:04 PM
Has anyone seen this documentary? I just saw this recently and I found it very interesting from a food level and from a cultural level. I just wanted to see what folks on this forum thought about it. The quest toward that level of excellence in your craft was certainly inspiring to me (and how I look my own job), but would I want to spend over $400 for a meal--I'm not sure--to me it goes back to the idea of diminishing returns. Sort of the same idea of how much nicer is a $200 bottle of wine versus a $50 bottle--I've had both and quite frankly I'm quite satisfied with the $50 and the $150 in my pocket.


In that vein, can a $20 piece of tuna be that much better than a $3 piece of tuna. Obviously, it's more than just the fish...there's the rice and how's it cut and what part of the body it came from as well? Jiro's sushi was beautiful in its simplicity and purity compared to American-style sushi, which is now done up with all sort of other things that the actual flavor and texture of the fish has taken somewhat of a backseat.


I'm curious about other people's thoughts about this.

Eamon Burke
10-09-2012, 12:23 PM
I agree on the thing about diminishing returns, until you get to the level that Jiro is on. Eating there is not about return on investment, or getting good sushi. I can make good sushi. Its about eating the BEST sushi, a once-in-a-lifetime experience of eating food that suggests to be 20 bites of food at the pinnacle of readiness for consumption, where even the timing of when they slaughter the animals is not thinking about storage or efficiency, but when and how it will be in your mouth.

I would pay $400 to eat there. No doubt.

knyfeknerd
10-09-2012, 12:24 PM
There are at least 2 other threads here about it. I cannot reference them now because I'm at work, but yes it is an awesome movie.

ayeung74
10-09-2012, 12:30 PM
I agree on the thing about diminishing returns, until you get to the level that Jiro is on. Eating there is not about return on investment, or getting good sushi. I can make good sushi. Its about eating the BEST sushi, a once-in-a-lifetime experience of eating food that suggests to be 20 bites of food at the pinnacle of readiness for consumption, where even the timing of when they slaughter the animals is not thinking about storage or efficiency, but when and how it will be in your mouth.

I would pay $400 to eat there. No doubt.

Yeah, Eamon you are right...it IS about eating the BEST sushi (if you are able to afford it). I actually heard of some feedback I got from a friend's friend who ate there and had mixed reviews. Obviously, you can't diss on the food, but mostly about feeling a bit awkward and uncomfortable in the small and stark restaurant and seriousness of the staff.

Paradox
10-09-2012, 12:33 PM
I have seen a trailer for this. Your post got me looking for it and I found that Netflix has this streaming. I'm going to watch it today. Thanks! I have wanted to watch it for a while now.

We have a lot of good sushi shops here in Seattle. I have found the sweet spot in quality of the sushi to be in the $35-$50 range a person for one meal. That is typically the point where for me the quality of the sushi seems to peak being clearly better than places in the <-$25 range but with diminishing returns from higher priced sushi. Of course a lot of it depends on the restaurant. In general I find this to be the case here. There is a lot of competition for your sushi dollar here and I think that tends to drive up the quality of the product and down the price at the same time. Our location also gives us easier access to top quality ingredients too and that must help I would think.

ayeung74
10-09-2012, 01:03 PM
Cool, let me know what you think after you watch it. It's great and certainly a must watch if you are a sushi lover. I know Seattle has lots of great sushi and it makes me jealous.

There are a few top quality places in Houston prepared by trained sushi chefs, although more often than not most of the sushi is prepared by Mexicans workers that barely speak any English, which unfortunately was our experience when we went for sushi after watching the movie. I hope no one takes this as a racially discriminatory remark, I'm just pointing out the fact that they are not professionally trained and it shows. Needless to say, it was totally anti-climatic and depressing. Unfortunately, most Americans can't tell good from bad sushi. And as most businesses go, if you can get away with a cheaper option, its more money in your pocket (or at least that's how the rationale goes).

Crothcipt
10-09-2012, 01:12 PM
great conversation, here is the original thread.

http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/4875-Sushi-dreams?highlight=jiro

ecchef
10-09-2012, 11:09 PM
...can a $20 piece of tuna be that much better than a $3 piece of tuna.

Yes.

However it can also be much worse, depending on how it was handled.

Taz575
10-10-2012, 08:34 AM
I have never had sushi and I still liked the movie! I tried fresh Bluefin Tuna right out of the ice box a few hours after we caught it, and it wasn't that great, but eventually I still want to try real sushi!

mr drinky
10-10-2012, 08:45 AM
I agree on the thing about diminishing returns, until you get to the level that Jiro is on. Eating there is not about return on investment, or getting good sushi. I can make good sushi. Its about eating the BEST sushi, a once-in-a-lifetime experience of eating food that suggests to be 20 bites of food at the pinnacle of readiness for consumption, where even the timing of when they slaughter the animals is not thinking about storage or efficiency, but when and how it will be in your mouth.

I would pay $400 to eat there. No doubt.

I like how in the movie they said that Japanese people are often nervous when eating there and sometimes choose the son's restaurant because it is less intimidating. I wondered during the movie how nervous I would get if I were ever to eat there.

k.

Chuckles
10-10-2012, 09:30 AM
Ayeung74, have you tried Ucchi in Houston? They do a tremendous job.

Zwiefel
08-29-2013, 02:19 PM
Just found this review of Jiro's Son's restaurant. Certainly leaves one a little less interested in seeking them out :(

http://darindines.com/2012/11/15/sukiyabashi-jiro-roppongi-tokyo-japan/

Asteger
08-29-2013, 03:25 PM
How'd you come across that Dan? ;)

Korin_Mari
08-29-2013, 04:28 PM
I'd be curious to know how his son's skills are in comparison to his father's. My parent went to eat at Chef Jiro's restaurant and they seemed pretty thrilled about it.

Chef Jiro Ono's apprentice came to Korin with his business partner a week ago. (He was super nice. We got to take a picture for Facebook.) Apparently they opened a new restaurant in NYC. My coworker tried to see if she could get in, but she said she couldn't even get to reserve a seat because they were so booked.

"SUSHI NAKAZAWA Daisuke Nakazawa, who apprenticed with the chef Jiro Ono and appeared in the film “Jiro Dreams of Sushi,” brings his expertise to this omakase restaurant with a 10-seat sushi bar and a dining room. It is owned by Maurizio de Rosa and Alessandro Borgognone, restaurateurs who had the idea after Mr. de Rosa studied sake and decided to open a sushi restaurant serving omakase tastings paired with sake. Until September, only the sushi bar will be open (Monday): 23 Commerce Street (Seventh Avenue), (212) 924-2212, sushinakazawa.com." - New York Times

Zwiefel
08-29-2013, 04:38 PM
How'd you come across that Dan? ;)

A foodie friend + world traveler shared it with me :)

Slypig5000
08-29-2013, 05:10 PM
I really liked the movie, I think that if I ever have the opportunity to go I would.

pkjames
08-29-2013, 05:11 PM
I almost booked Jiro's for November, but then I figured out I may not be able to appreciate his Sushi.

Sure, we all ate suishi now and then, and there are quite a few decent suishi places in Sydney (thanks to the large Japanese population), but then, I have never dined in a proper suishi restaurant and I think spend $400 and dive into the world's best sushi is a bit of a waste (even from the chef's point of view).

J.

swarth
08-30-2013, 09:31 AM
I have a hard time swallowing the blogger's suggestion that the younger son's restaurant gives us any insight into what Jiro himself has to offer. It's hip to be a contrarian.

Baby Huey
08-30-2013, 09:35 AM
I almost booked Jiro's for November, but then I figured out I may not be able to appreciate his Sushi.

Sure, we all ate suishi now and then, and there are quite a few decent suishi places in Sydney (thanks to the large Japanese population), but then, I have never dined in a proper suishi restaurant and I think spend $400 and dive into the world's best sushi is a bit of a waste (even from the chef's point of view).

J.

I understand your concern, but would definitely go if I could swing it. As you may not appreciate it as much now as maybe in the future when you become more appreciative of good sushi. The only reason I say this is that you may never have the chance again. He is up there in age. I believe he is pushing 88 now. If you can't or will put yourself in a bind by going, then I would understand.

That is just me though.

Asteger
08-30-2013, 09:59 AM
"... Daisuke Nakazawa, who apprenticed with the chef Jiro ..."

Ah yes! I saw the photo. The guy who could never get the omelette right, until finally he did and was declared 'shokunin'.

Interesting that he'd move to the states. Makes sense business-wise, especially considering the popularity of the film.