Eating Out

Sushi Hon SF – Edomae Omakase in the Mission

This is one of those neighborhood gems worth traveling across town for. Located in a residential part of the Mission District, Sushi Hon was the first venture in what is now a multi-restaurant group by chef Min Choe of Mins Group. Among their portfolio of Japanese and Korean food and beverage establishments, I would say Sushi Hon leans more traditional.

They serve an edomae style (cured fish) omakase, with a la carte options as well. Dinner starts at an SF reasonable $135 for 18 dishes, 10 of which are nigiri. And I appreciated that the omakase menu was printed out beforehand so you could plan and pace yourself.

I’m a firm believer in sushi rice being as important, if not more so, than the fish, and I was a big fan of how they make it at Sushi Hon. Chef Yong proudly declared that he washes the rice for an hour the night before to remove extra starch. Combined with a bold dark-light vinegar ratio, I thought that the perfectly defined rice grains and bright acid made for an incredible nigiri base.

Though I am team vinegar, I could see their liberal use being a bit much for certain palates. The mozuku starter, for example, was silky seaweed strands in a sweet vinegar broth that was like a refined gut shot. And a decadent uni and chopped toro rice bowl supplement shared the stage equally with the tangy vinegar rice. No complaints from my sour-loving palate though.

Let’s not forget the nigiri. Some highlights for me included the hotate, or fresh scallop from Hokkaido, carefully scored to yield both a visually impressive and textured bite. Seared 14-day aged toro (fatty tuna) and A5 wagyu nigiris, perfectly melted in their respective fatty goodness. And the engawa (fluke fin) nigiri supplement had a nice snappy chew to it.

After the many nigiri courses, an early summer corn tomato jelly “ceviche” was a refreshing palette cleanser. And dessert was a creamy, but not too sweet, kinako panna cotta that had a savory touch from the toasted soybean.

The inviting counter service from Chef Yong also made the meal more memorable. He enthusiastically shared his sushi knowledge and preparation details, and his proud, yet humble energy was infectious. He also excitedly gave us a taste of the in-house MG rice lager.

Sushi Hon also offers a smaller lunch omakase for $65, and they do delivery as well.

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