In case you didn’t know, Bangkok is Japanese food heaven, and I am not talking about Fuji or Zen. Because of the influx of Japanese manufacturing plants (thus tens of thousands of Japanese expats) since decades ago, Thailand in general has accepted Japanese food as part of its sub-culture. Outside the mainstream restaurants, hidden in the small alleyways all over Thailand are little Japanese restaurants, many opened by Japanese, for the the Japanese. Also, its close proximity to the Tsukiji market in Tokyo (only a 6.5 hour flight away) means that premium seafood can be flown into Bangkok conveniently every day.
This brings us to Sushi Masato, an exclusive Omakase restaurant serving only tiny handfuls of privileged customers every day. Chef Masato Shimizu comes with a big reputation despite his young age, with One-Star Michelin accolades earned in 2 separate restaurants in New York City.
Before overwhelming you with pictures of virtually every course on this excellent Omakase experience, let me also tell you that this is the only restaurant in Bangkok I know thus far with [email protected] as their main enquiry email address, so hold your hands up and celebrate if you manage to win a seat in Chef Masato’s little sanctuary.
Chef Masato showing off his skills.
A less aggressive, freshly-grated wasabi served throughout the night
Starter of Ankimo, lightly-steamed pate of monkfish liver in Sake, really built up expectations for the rest of the night.
Buri and Hokkaido Ikura, Wild Yellow Tail with Salmon Roe from Hokkaido.
Shirako, Cod Fish Milt with the King of mushrooms in Japan, the Matsutake.
Grape as a palate cleanser before the sushi courses begin.
Shima Aji, Wild Stripejack. The light brown Shari (flavoured rice) immediately caught my attention as it was delicately-flavoured and served warm.
Sumi Ika, squid in season. Look at the rice, you can literally count every grain.
Aji, Japanese Horse Mackerel.
Kinmedai, Golden Eye Snapper, lightly toasted on top with some burning charcoal.
Chutoro, served after the fatty delicious Maguro, which was gobbled up before a picture was taken.
Wakame palate cleanser, which proved light and crunchy, unlike any wakame I had ever eaten before.
Akagai, Surf Clam, sweet!
And the unexpected explosion of flavour in my mouth, Shiro Ebi (White Shrimp).
Grilled Squid Head.
Akamutsu, Rosy Sea Bass.
One of the absolute highlights of the night, 2 exquisite types of Uni (Sea Urchin) served.
The lighter-tasting Ensui Uni, which is simply preserved in seawater and will disintegrate within a few hours, is eaten on its own.
The heavier-tasting Uni is served in a sushi roll.
Anago, Sea Eel is served next after the Uni-inspired ecstasy.
Meat ball soup served as some sort of a palate cleanser.
Negitoro (Minced Tuna) Temaki is served after a display of showmanship by Chef Masato.
The sweet Tamago, which to me, tasted like a light butter cake.
Yuzu Granita as dessert.
And just when you thought everything was over, one of my favourite dishes of the night was presented, home-made cold tofu.
At 4000THB per head before drinks and taxes (as of November 2016), Sushi Masato not only proved to be a genuine and fantastic Omakase experience, it is also definitely one of the most value-for-money around.
The challenge, then, is to get yourself the chance to warm Chef Masato’s seats (you might need to reserve a couple of months in advance). That, you will have to figure out yourselves but maybe their unique email address is a good place to start.