Michelin 1-star premium sushi just one day a week in Kyoto
"Sushi Nakamura" has been attracting a great number of gourmands to Roppongi, Tokyo since the restaurant opened its doors for business in 2000. Owner Masanori Nakamura spent about 10 years training in Japanese restaurants and sushi shops from the time he was 19 years old, before going independent. He is basically self-taught in sushi, having researched secret ways of slicing the fish in order to achieve a sense of unity between the fish and the vinegared rice, together with various preparation methods in the aim of establishing a new style of Edomae-sushi. His unique style of sushi and hors d’oeuvres, which was born from his earnest efforts, has earned him a solid reputation, and in 2008, "Sushi Nakamura" was awarded a Michelin 1-star.
Under the name of "Gion Sushi Nakamura," "Sushi Nakamura" is open only 1 day a week in Gion, Kyoto. This unusual spot came into being from the desire to have Kyoto people—who would find it hard to make the journey to Tokyo— also able to enjoy Mr. Nakamura’s sushi. Consequently, the restaurant concept and the style of food presentation are the same as in Tokyo, as is the fish. Fish that has been discerningly selected at Tsukiji Fish Market, such as tuna from Fujita Fisheries, is purchased in Tokyo and shipped to Kyoto. Then there is the vinegared sushi rice, which even surprised Mr. Nakamura himself. Sushi Nakamura uses Koshihikari rice from Tochioshi in Niigata Prefecture, preparing it in a nanbutetsu-style iron pot made in Iwate Prefecture. However, as Mr. Nakaura explains, “Kyoto has good quality water, so you get a wonderfully delicious flavor, even using the exact same kind of rice.” The vinegar is a blend of 3 different varieties, including rice vinegar and red vinegar made from fermented sake lees. It works well with the seafood to create a vinegared sushi rice that brings out the seafood's natural flavors. When pressing the sushi, Mr. Nakamura gives consideration to the sense of unity between the vinegared rice and the sushi toppings. He uses special tricks throughout his work, such as cutting white fish into thin slices and layering it in four layers to create a soft texture.
"Sushi Nakamura" interior has a Japanese cypress counter that seats 11 patrons. Views of Gion Shirakawa can be enjoyed through the windows. In spring, the sakura blossoms beautifully, giving patrons a feeling of Kyoto-style elegance. The dignified space is overflowing with Japanese-style atmosphere and is frequented by customers on dates and on business entertainment or dinners, as well as being popular among foreign customers.
*The availability of this webpage does not guarantee that the restaurant presented provides services in English, unless otherwise stated. Please be aware that English services may also depend on staff availability at the restaurant.
A 5-minute walk from Gion Shijo Station, Exit 9(Keihan Line)