Uzushio is the shortest path from Akihabara Station to revolving sushi.

Everybody knows that you don’t have to walk very far in Tokyo’s Akihabara district before you come across an anime, electronics, or video game specialty store. It’s also only a very short walk from Akihabara Station to a number of kaitenzushi, or revolving sushi, restaurants.

In 2019, a branch of kaitenzushi chain Sushiro opened in the neighborhood, located just a one-minute walk from the ticket gates of JR Akihabara Station. Two years after that one of Sushiro’s rivals, Hama Sushi, opened a branch on the same block that’s even closer to the station, only about 30 seconds away on foot. But if you’re looking for the absolute shortest distance from Akihabara Station to kaitenzushi, you’ll find it at Uzushio, which is just 10 seconds from the station, close enough that you could cover the distance with a few long strides.

▼ That’s Uzushio on the left, with the kanji character for kaitenzushi (回転寿司) written to the left of its entrance.

As a neighborhood that thrives on trends, Akihabara’s urban landscape tends to change pretty rapidly. Uzushio has been here since 2010, though, and our Japanese-language reporter P.K. Sanjun figured if it could hold onto that prime location for 14 years, it must be doing something right, right?

But in all the trips he’s made to Akihabara, P.K. had never stopped in to try Uzushio for himself. Maybe it’s because the restaurant is so close to the station that his excited momentum coming off the train has been carrying him right past it and deeper into the neighborhood before he starts looking for something to eat. Whatever the reason, though, he decided it was time to finally step inside and check out Uzushio’s sushi.

You can actually see the Akihabara Hama Sushi from the entrance to Uzushio, since they’re on opposite sides of the same plaza. P.K. could see that the Hama Sushi was crowded with afternoon diners, while Uzushio was much sparser in terms of customers this day. That meant, though, that he could slide on in without any wait for a seat.

Uzushio’s interior is refreshingly retro. Touch panels for ordering have become more or less ubiquitous at the major kaitenzushi chains, but if you want something that’s not already ot on the conveyor belt as Uzushio, you either ask he chef for it directly or fill out one of these order papers and hand it to the staff.

▼ Simply write down the number of plates of each fish you’d like next to its name. The order sheets are bilingual, with both English and Japanese text, as Uzushio is foreign traveler friendly place.

Prices range from 100 to 700 yen (roughly US$0.65 to US$4.45) per plate, with most items a little more expensive than they’d be at the unabashedly budget-focused major kaitenzushi chains.

P.K. started off with a plate of maguro (tuna) for 250 yen, and it was very much worth the price, with the thick cuts of fish moist, thick, and delicious.

Next, he went for one of the lowest-priced items on the menu, the 100-yen saba (mackerel). This was adequate but unremarkable, but thankfully there was tastier stuff on the way soon with negitoro gunkan (minced fatty tuna belly and green onion, 200 yen)…

karei (flounder, 200 yen)…

…and iwashi (sardine, 150 yen), all of which were nice, tasty pieces of sushi.

By the time P.K. finished ordering and eating, his tab came up to 3,000 yen, which he estimates is probably around 1,000 yen more than he would have spent for a similar quantity of food at Sushiro. Still, Uzushio has its own, helped in so small part by how it feels a bit like a kaitenzushi throwback, without all the unorthodox meat dishes and desserts that you see at budget kaitenzushi. Uzushio doesn’t do anything flashy or gaudy Instead, its focus is on good, reliable sushi.

In that sense, you could almost say Uzushio is like a well-run commuter train, satisfyingly dependable even when it’s not dazzling, and since it turns out Uzushio is actually owned by JR East Cross Station, the restaurant division of East Japan division of East Japan Railway Company, the comparison is especially apt.

Restaurant information
Uzushio (Akihabaraekimae branch) / うず潮(秋葉原駅前店)
Address: Tokyo-to, Chiyoda-ku, Soto Kanda 1-17-6
Open 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.

Photos © SoraNews24
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