Posted by: Orlick | May 15, 2010

Judy Ruminates… Sasabune – UES

I’ve always wanted to go to Sasabune. It seems like one of THE places to eat sushi. I haven’t been able to eat sushi for a while though because I’ve only had one job for the past 8 months, so I’m glad to have Judy to share her experiences here. —- Jeffrey Tastes

Categories: Japanese, Sushi Bars
Neighborhoods: Upper East Side, Yorkville
401 E 73rd Street
(between 1st Ave & York Ave)
New York, NY 10021
(212) 249-8583

[groan] We came here not knowing the immense ramifications the omakase would have on our stomachs. We should’ve been prepared. We should’ve fasted for 8 hours with no food or water. We should’ve prayed to fat Buddha for temporary belly expansion in the likeness of his own stomach.

Upon sitting, we were offered two choices for the omakase- the “normal” or the “Japanese.” Of course we went with the Japanese. Isn’t that what you should order in a Japanese restaurant? I suspect the normal is for the timid?

The Japanese omakase is 12 courses of fish, fish, shellfish, and fish. It whizzed by at record speed as the waitstaff quickly whisked away empty plates, acting like they were docked pay for any and all delays that happened. Our waiter had an accent and his pronunciation of the various fish was sometimes lost in translation. He was good about telling us which fish can be dipped in soy sauce and which were not upon peril to our tastebuds. I thought that was cute and weird at the same time.



Unfortunately, I can’t remember all the fish we had. The vast majority were excellent. Two lacked some freshness, including the sea urchin.


All I can say is when we got to the last dish, the Alaskan crab roll, we were beyond overstuffed and we had to tell the waiter we needed to stop. He then informed us that our suffering was at an end because that was actually the last dish. One of our friends could have eaten more, but he is a freak of nature who was probably born without the limitations of a stomach. I can only imagine all that sushi taking happy residence in his organs and floating merrily along in his bloodstream.




To give you a sense of preparation of the sushi, I would say that it was one step behind Sushi of Gari. Not quite avant-garde, but they did put stuff in between the fish and rice like shiso leaf. If you’re into old-school sushi, this is not the place for you. Also, even if they say you can use soy sauce on some of the fish, do me a favor and don’t use any. Truly fresh fish do not need to be masked with saltiness. —Judy Ruminates

Sushi M. on Yelp – this guy has the best sushi reviews
Sasabune on Yelp – mostly 5 stars
NYT review from 2006


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