23 Courses. 8 Sake and Wine Pairings. Mic drop.
I'm here to tell you why Sushi Hon's Omakase experience will make you never want sushi anywhere else.
Nestled in a residential corner straddling San Francisco's Mission district and Potrero Hill, Sushi Hon delights in every way with its unmatched Omakase. The 23 tasting courses with 8 wine and sake pairings [yes, you read that right!] imprinted a memorable and fulfilling journey through the year’s seasons, beginning with soft, clean, vegetal umami flavor and ending with robust, earthy and herbal complexities.
Sushi Hon is anything but your average sushi... or service.
You won't find wasabi or a mini-carafe of soy sauce on the table, typical of other standard sushi joints. The depth of Sushi Hon is that each dish arrives seasoned to your table; it is served as it should be eaten.
Also expect your water and tea to be refilled without noticing, napkin to be folded when you return to your seat, and upon the presentation of each course and pairing, a thorough explanation of the ingredients and profile. Even Hon's overhead table lighting lends itself to capturing gram-worthy photos.
The first three courses-- a Shigoku oyster soaked in dashi, edamame cake, and seaweed with water shield-- offer a light
and fragrant "welcome" for the experience that followed, like spring around the corner. It paired with a brut rosé that cut the acidity of the Seattle oyster's pickled veggie. And, that sour seaweed swish is simply mouthwatering.
I moved progressively through each course: kelp-cured red sea bream, yellow jack, and soy-cured medium fatty tuna to golden eye snapper, horse mackerel, and yellowtail with shiso culminated in the flavors of autumn, anchored by a octopus tasting of richly braised onion [below].
The spring and summer courses were complimented by several junmai daiginjo, including Dassai 45 Nigori, an unfiltered style with a bouquet of coconut that paired beautifully with the yuzu-dipped golden eye snapper.
The second half of the menu of Spanish mackerel, winter yellowtail, Japanese snow crab and grilled chinook tyee king salmon firmly grounded the palate in savory, and even herbal, fall and winter flavors. The supreme fatty tuna, urchin and eel rounded the seasons with a sweet and smooth finish.
A feast for the eyes, the A5 wagyu arrived looking quite regal, dressed in black truffle and gold leaf. Coupled with the tyee king salmon belly and toro tartar with caviar [below], the trio elevated the entire experience.
Perhaps what I appreciated most was a humble bowl of piping hot, red miso soup with playful nameko mushrooms that danced at the bottom, signaling the end of the meal and transition to dessert: an elegant yuzu panna cotta.
If the menu alone isn't enough to entice you to try their Omakase, the service and experience of becoming introduced to a new passion should be.
Cheers to an abundant 2020.