Thursday, March 10, 2011

Sushi Kyotatsu

This fantastic sushi joint is located at the Narita Airport in Japan.  You could tell by their sushi rice that they are very traditional in style.  Sushi rice has a good amount of vinegar and kombu (kelp).

There are 4 Sushi chefs working like chickens with their heads cutoff.   A very busy place indeed.

Ordered ala carte, sea eel (anago), sea urchin (uni) , salmon (sake),  medium fatty tuna (chu toro), halfbeak (sayori), and egg (tamago).

The anago, don’t let the word eel fool you, it really is just a fish and has the texture of fish.  Anago is more tender than unagi (fresh water eel) that we usually get in the US.  The sauce is very mild and not over powering.

The uni is sweet but not too sweet, I think the Japanese verity is a bit milder than the California uni.  The varieties of sizes and colors of the uni lead me to believe they are harvested fresh out of the spiky shell.

The sake, it’s not as fatty and creamy as what I’ve had in the US (Scottish variety).   I have to say I like the US version better.

The chu toro (blue fin variety), I was going to order their fatty tuna (o- toro) but, they had a sign on the table that said they have chu toro from the local Tsukiji fish market.  Knowing how famous Tsukiji market is I had to try it.   It’s fairly mild in flavor and not very creamy but, it still has the melt in your mouth quality.

The sayori, has very little flavor.  The texture is like a snapper (crunchy) but more tender.  This is the second time I’ve tried sayori and still not a big fan.

The tamago, sweet, eggy, you can really taste the mirin (sweet rice vinegar).  Tamago is usually eaten at the end of a sushi meal as dessert.  It’s also a good nigiri to judge the quality of the sushi rice.

Overall a very good traditional style sushi joint.  Definitely give it a try when you happen to be in the Narita airport.

10 tips on eating sushi:

  • Eat with your fingers not with your chopsticks. (it is a finger food after all)
  • Eat it all in one bite. (fish to rice ratio is important, it’s meant to be eaten together)
  • Do not mix wasabi and soy sauce together. (wasabi and soy sauce are meant to be applied separately)
  • Only apply wasabi on top of the fish if you want additional kick. (there is already wasabi between the fish and the rice)
  • Order sushi instead of sashimi. (½ of tasting sushi is to taste the harmony between the fish and the rice)
  • Rice should have flavor.  (rice vinegar, kelp, salt, and sugar are mixed into the rice)
  • Don’t drink alcohol while eating sushi , drink afterwards. (usually water or green tea is consume when eating sushi so you can really taste the delicate flavor)
  • Sushi shouldn’t be fishy. (if it smells or taste fishy it’s not fresh)
  • Ginger is used to cleanse your palate between different fish.
  • Finally, you almost always get better service/sushi when you sit at the sushi bar.

Narita Airport
Terminal 1, No.3 Satellite, 3rd Floor

Rating: ●●●●○


  1. Nice post. Still teaching me about sushi.

  2. Love it. YES! Do it right and eat with your fingers. Still loving Umi the best in Richmond so far.

    1. Umi sushi bistro in richmond virginia, is the best?

  3. Can this place be accessed from anywhere in the airport or do you have to be in Terminal 1? I will be in Narita airport in a month.

  4. My wife and I ate sushi from this restaurant and then boarded the flight to LA. On the plane we started to vomit and had diarrea(Simpsons like having radioactivity contamination). It was a nightmare indeed. Still we are sick after arriving home. Fish from sea of Japan are contaminated with radioactivity from Fukushima nuclear disaster. I don't recommend to eat fish from this restaurant, never!