Get a taste of wagyu sushi in Tokyo

Tuna? Try again – the city's most in-demand sushi topping right now is raw meat
Wagyu sushi | Time Out Tokyo
The taste of luxury? Wagyu sushi with foie gras at Nikuzushi
By Kisa Toyoshima |
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A perfect partner for some fine wine or quality nihonshu, the fusion delicacy of meat sushi has been rising up the popularity charts of many a Tokyo gourmand in recent years. Here, we’ve picked out five representative restaurants specialising in sushi made with wagyu, from an upscale joint serving nigiri topped with luxurious Yonezawa beef to a casual izakaya where kuroge wagyu nigiri can be had for as low as ¥300. At a time when friends of uncooked meat have been hit with regulations prohibiting the serving of raw beef liver (in 2012) and raw pork liver (2015), these meat sushi joints offer the chance to sample raw, or almost raw, wagyu in safe, clean and comfortable surroundings. 

The top five

Restaurants, Japanese

Yonezawagyu Oki

icon-location-pin Marunouchi

One of the very few restaurants in Tokyo specialising in Yamagata’s Yonezawa beef, Oki serves up high-grade, extra-tasty meat in the Kurobei Yokocho area inside Tokyo Station. Here, you can order both roast beef sushi (three nigiri for ¥1,200) and flame-grilled ‘otoro’ sushi (three for ¥1,500). The former consists of a roast slab of sirloin rump seasoned with a lightly flavoured sauce, making for a classy combo that really draws out the umami flavour...

Restaurants

Nikuzushi Kagurazaka

icon-location-pin Iidabashi

Hidden along Michikusa Yokocho, the 'gateway to Kagurazaka’, is this no-frills eatery dealing in fresh meat slapped on rice. Not too far removed from actual seafood sushi, the flavours here are crisp but mild – as is to be expected from a joint that pioneered the meat sushi trend and now operates branches all over town. This location is special in that it always carries wagyu...

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Restaurants, Japanese

Ginza Koso

icon-location-pin Ginza

The first restaurant in Chuo Ward officially licensed to serve raw meat, kuroge wagyu specialist Koso is a certifiably safe choice for anyone still worried about the hygienic aspects of meat sushi. Dealing only in wagyu, the chefs source fresh product from places like Kagoshima and Saga every day, so you’re sure to get only the good stuff...

Restaurants

Sagoemon

icon-location-pin Shibuya

If you’re looking to have a wagyu feast without breaking the bank, head straight for Dogenzaka’s Sagoemon, a casual kushiyaki izakaya popular enough to make reservations essential. Skewers here go for ¥80-130, appetisers for ¥400-700, and the always impressive kuroge wagyu flame-grilled sirloin nigiri...

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Restaurants, Yakiniku

Kintan

icon-location-pin Ebisu

A busy yakiniku joint on the west side of Ebisu Station, Kintan’s the place to be for wagyu sushi at reasonable prices. Pledging to offer a ‘casual rich’ atmosphere, whatever that may mean, the eatery is very popular with groups of carnivorous ladies looking to get their fill in stylish surrounds. Join them around the table grills and order a serving...

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