Sushi Yasuda

Sushi Yasuda
204 E 43rd St
New York, NY 10017
b/t 3rd Ave & 2nd Ave Midtown East

January 20, 2017

Second Review : 2017, 01,20

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L to R clockwise:

Golden eye snapper - Sea bream - Shimaaji – Mix of chutoro and otoro - Bluefin tuna - Buri yellowtail

After two years and couple visits in between, I think it is about time to reevaluate Yasuda. The last time we did Omakase at the sushi bar, it ended up with over 20 pieces of Nigiri, which was practically unheard-of in the Omakase world… Thanks to our sushi chef Ryo, it was quite a full-blown dining experience.

Among our first six pieces, the sea bream had a breathtakingly delicate texture. Shimaaji was worth repeating for its elegant fruit-like lightness, and followed by the satisfying toro, as it must.

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Giant clam + Sea scallop, King salmon New Zealand + King salmon Alaska, Spanish mackerel + Jack mackerel, Needle fish + Sea perch

Next were four rounds of dual serving. In the first set, the giant clam was bouncy in a sharp way like no other. The pair of king salmon was both deeply meaty and buoyantly light. And the fishiness almost felt compulsory when mackerel came in at the right moment.

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Sea urchins from California, Salmon roe, Sea eel 2 sauce

As always, the salt flavored sea eel outshined the soy sauce version, and the bountiful mound of sea urchins have helped effacing any flaw in the slightly falling apart gunkan-maki.

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Scallion, Seared fatty tuna, Oyster, Shrimp

The scallion nigiri was a happy serendipity. It was my first time trying it, and I adored its packed oniony but not too pungent flavor immediately. Fatty tuna was seared at a perfect timing and was every bit as oily as good. The salt flake on the oyster did exactly what salt should do: It amplified the sea flavor.

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Fatty tuna roll, Egg custard, Tamagoyaki

Both egg bites were rounded and substantial. And last but not least, the fatty tuna roll, was totally for the low-key rich. The tenuity of the fatty tuna guaranteed an instant explosion in mouth. This is the piece left a strong mark in my memory. One more time, I die…

Sushi Yasuda, still the super conventional, greatly sense-filling, and the very peak of New York sushi dining in my eyes.

First Review : 2015, 07,091

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Sea Grapes with mustard vinegar

Instead of searching for where the best sushi is, I aimed for the most old school sushi, and the fruits of my labor led me to Yasuda. There is no fixed menu at Yasuda. The types of fish and its corresponding price vary upon each day. We opted for chef’s omakase. The meal started with some slightly seasoned kailan and vinegary sea grapes, both were very appetizing.

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Madai Sea Bulin

The minute I bite into this first piece I know the quality of the fish here can be some of the top in town. The sea bulin was moist, and contained a delicate sweetness. It also got a beautiful yuzu finish.

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Shimaaji Yellow Tail

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Sea Scallop

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Blue fin tuna

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Fresh dark sea eel anago

Yasuda has the largest eel collection I have ever seen in the city. This fresh dark sea eel was gloriously fatty. The sweetness brought by the soy sauce was spot on. A near-great piece.

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Jack mackerel

The perfect fat and oil flavor shined through one bite. Most heavenly, a slightly fishy aftertaste lingered in the month for a while. Jack mackerel was unquestionably a top contender for encore.

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White king salmon

White king salmon’s meat was less velvety but more delicate than king salmon. Its subtleness was mesmerizing.

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Chu toro

The most incredible morsel of the night. This chutoro hit my senses with an optimal balance of fish oil and maguro flavor. The cut was so generous, and I surely love to be spoiled.

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King salmon new zealand

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Pacific oyster

The use of coarse salt further brought out the natural brininess of oyster. The oyster itself was absolutely juicy, and had a satisfying meaty mouthfeel.

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Sea urchine Maine

The uni neta was hefty but not loose. The fat on it was nakedly evident. It tasted very in-season with almost no presence of fermented flavor.

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Bonito

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Shrimp

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Salmon roe chum

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Sayori

Another unfussy mackerel piece. The sheen on surface was just gorgeous. Sayori had a fun squid-like cruch, and its pungent flavor was not as assertive as saba below.

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Saba

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Giant Clam

This shimmery giant clam got the most amazing texture. The meat was served in a slightly iced temperature, which elevated its bounciness. Better yet was its slicing way on top for providing an intriguing chewability.

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Toro

Fat pattern here was ever so densely marbled.  It was melting-in-seconds, and of course umami packed. This morsel was straight up dreamy.

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Unagi

And yes, we tried as much eel as we can stuff ourselves at all costs…

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Kohada

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Egg custard

I generally prefer custard to omelette for its creamy texture. And this thick cut tamago was unfailingly brulee-like. A brush of soy sauce added a savory layer to it. However, the finish was still vaguely sweet and lingering. I don’t think you can get any more fundamental than this when it comes to indigenous egg custard.

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Pricing was not bad at Yasuda considering its top-notch sushi, also since tip is already included. The only negative is that service is kind of rushed. We didn’t have enough time to savor each piece before the next one is served. And they cut people off from ordering after one and half hour.