Sushi counter breaks the £400 a head barrier

A new sushi restaurant opened in Mayfair this week charging what is thought to be the UK’s highest price for a meal. A meal Sushi Kanesaka, in Mayfair hotel 45 Park Avenue, costs £420 for 18 courses – with optional sake or wine pairings adding from £150 a head.

Sushi master Shinji Kanesaka opened his restaurant in Tokyo’s Ginza district in 2000. He also has two restaurants called Shinji in Singapore, at the Carlton and St Regis hotels. For the London project he has brought a team of eight chefs, sommeliers and hosts to attend to nine guests sitting at the counter and four more in a private dining room.

He said: “I am honoured to introduce our culinary heritage and passion for sushi, with some of my team and chefs from Sushi Kanesaka in Tokyo. We are thrilled to share the true essence of Edomae sushi, meticulously prepared using the finest ingredients, traditional techniques, and utmost dedication, transporting guests to the vibrant streets of Ginza — and the tranquillity of a traditional omakase service. 

Dining omakase is very special and unique, an intimate personal connection between the chef and the diner.”

Another Japanese sushi master, Mitsuhiro Araki, was the first to break the £300 per head barrier in London, after closing down his Ginza venue and transferring his entire focus to Mayfair in 2014 on the way to becoming the first chef to win three Michelin stars in both Tokyo and London. Four years ago he left the Araki in Mayfair in the hands of his protégé Marty Lau, and opened another restaurant in Hong Kong.

Rivals in the high-price stakes are headed by Gareth Ward’s Ynyshir in Wales, which charges £375 for 30 courses, while diners at Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck are likely to pay £1,000 for two people including wine.

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