When I was 5 years old, I broke my leg and landed in hospital, bed-ridden and in plaster cast from hip to toe. I ended up having to stay overnight which meant being faced with hospital food. I was forced to eat fish fingers. The horror.
Luckily over the years my tastes have matured and, to my family’s surprise, one of my favourite foods is now sushi. In Edinburgh, we are lucky to have sushi restaurants dotted all over the city and I’m making it my mission to visit as many of them as possible. I’ve only made it to 3 so far… see how they fared below:
1. Chizuru Tei 278 Morrison St, Edinburgh EH3 8DT
I visited Chizuru Tei in a group of around 15 for my friend’s birthday. It’s a small space but they managed to fit all of us in and accommodate for any other tables too. It is nicely decorated with lanterns and the chefs prepare the sushi as you enter which is a nice touch. It’s a BYOB restaurant and I don’t believe there is a corkage charge. Most people ordered sushi to start and a group of 5 of us decided to share 2 of the sushi platters.
The sushi was delicious and there was plenty for all 5 of us to be completely satisfied. We then moved on to mains and I ordered the King Prawn Fried Noodles. The bowl placed in front of me was huge and filled with large, juicy prawns. It was probably one of the best noodle dishes I have ever tasted.
When it came to settling up, we split the bill and it came to £11 each. Eleven pounds for an extremely generous amount of food, excellent service and an overall lovely evening. I really couldn’t fault my visit and can’t wait to head back.
2. Kenji Sushi 42 St Stephen St, Edinburgh EH3 5AL
Kenji Sushi was the first sushi restaurant I visited in Edinburgh. Situated on the cute little St Stephen Street in Stockbridge, the restaurant is petite with a real Japanese feel. We dined late on a Sunday afternoon so were the only people there, but I’m sure if you go at a more standard time there would be a better atmosphere.
As this was our first time in a proper sushi restaurant, we were a little unsure what to order. Staff were helpful and we went with Octopus Takoyaki and Spicy Tuna Maki Sushi for our starters and Chicken Katsu Ramen and Donburi for our mains. My favourite was the Spicy Tuna Maki which came with a lovely kick of spice. The Takoyaki was also delicious, if slightly unsual and perhaps a little too much batter for my taste.
I was given a giant bowl of Donburi which had a mellow but good flavour and plenty of rice and chicken to keep me satisfied. The Chicken Katsu was deliciously crispy although the Ramen had little flavour unfortunately.
Regardless, we had a lovely meal at a very reasonable price and would definitely return.
3. Maki & Ramen 97-101 Fountainbridge, Edinburgh EH3 9QG
I first spotted Maki & Ramen on Instagram and instantly fell in love with their beautifully presented Ramen bowls. We visited on a slight hangover, which in reflection was not our best idea as we weren’t able to enjoy the food as much as we should have. This was possibly the most modern restaurant of the three and had a large station in the middle where chefs prepared the sushi. Unfortunately I had my back to it but there were seats placed round it which would’ve been great for learning some new skills!
Faced with an extensive menu full of choice, we decided to go for a sushi packed menu, rather than sampling any of the Ramen or Donburi dishes – a big mistake, we realised, once we saw other tables’ Ramen bowls emerging from the kitchen.
Regardless, we tasted some delicious sushi including a Sushi Set with the Chef’s choice of Nigiri, Sashimi and Hosomaki – all delicious minus one piece of white fish sashimi which I built up the courage to taste but wouldn’t personally choose again. Highlights for me were the Grilled Prawn Nigiri and Spicy Tuna Hosomaki.
Service was good and the food was a reasonable price… Maki & Ramen – we’ll be back to remedy our mistakes and order the Ramen!
Which Edinburgh restaurants should be next on my sushi hitlist? All recommendations greatly appreciated… Pt.2 coming soon!