Semi-secret Shinjuku sushi lunch is a great way to get your fish fix for cheap in central Tokyo

05.April.2017 | FOOD

Delicious maguro tuna and all-you-can-drink coffee for less than most fast food set meals.

Sushi is one of those things we love so much that we always wish we had more of it in our lives. However, money is another thing that fits that description, which puts us in sort of a bind, since we usually have to exchange some of the money we have for goods, such as sushi.

So we were happy to discover an awesome lunch deal offered right in the heart of Tokyo. While strolling the Shinjuku neighborhood on our lunch break, we noticed that the local branch of popular sushi chain Sushi Zanmai has a sign outside touting their weekday lunch specials, which are offered from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Stepping inside, we asked for a table and started looking over the menu, where we found an incredible deal: a magurotzuke rice bowl for just 515 yen (US$4.65)!

If you haven’t had the pleasure of eating magurotzuke before, the word refers to slices of tuna (maguro) sashimi seasoned with a slightly sweet and salty soy-based sauce. Sushi Zanmai ups the deliciousness quotient by adding shiso, or Japanese basil leaf, and sesame seeds, plus a pinch of pickled ginger.

Sushi Zanmai has a sold reputation of offering tasty food at a reasonable price, but even then, we weren’t expecting much from a bowl of sushi that costs less than many of the set meals offered at a fast food burger joint. But our fears were misplaced, as we took a bite and discovered that the maguro had just the right balance between fat and lean fish, making it flavorful yet refreshing.