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“service could potentially ruin the night”
Review of Sushi Sasabune

Sushi Sasabune
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Ranked #171 of 2,357 Restaurants in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: USD 50 - USD 50
Cuisines: Japanese, Seafood, Sushi, Asian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Keeaumoku St.
Transit: South King street and Keeaumoku street by bus.
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“service could potentially ruin the night”
Reviewed 7 March 2012

I have to agree with the minority here. The food was great, the portions were small and delicate but the taste was flawless. However there were several factors that more or less ruined the night for us.

The service was generally very snobbish. Our reservation was at 6pm, quite early and there were probably 4 or 5 other tables occupied. However, when the waiter handed us the paper menu, roughly a quarter of the items were crossed out by hand. Common items such as eel simply were not available that night. Which, for such a pricy place, was rather surprising.

When we finally decided on 8 items (minium for the first round), we ordered 2 orders of tuna (so 4 pieces instead of 2). When our food came out the waiter said to us "I understand you put down 2 orders of tuna, but the chef says you can only have 1." Well I'll be thinking about this one for a long time. How a sushi restaurant runs low on tuna at 6pm is not going to be an easy one to understand. Not to mention that we don't get to decide what we eat these days, the chef does, apparently. In addition, the wasabi we had was not the usual consistency, it was very runny and 'watered down', like green tea smoothie almost. After 15 courses the two of us were nowhere near full, considering 15 courses meant basically 15 pieces of sushi for each of us.

The waiters did tell us how to eat, although we didn't mind that too much. What we couldn't get over was how we weren't allowed to order what we wanted off a menu that was only 3/4 available. I expected much more out of such a place.

  • Visited March 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank sophie87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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287 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
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  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
26 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Amazing”
Reviewed 3 March 2012

When the taxi pulls up outside you'll think they must have gotten the wrong place. Unassuming sushi joint in the middle of a nondescript block. Oh boy how that betrays the magical things that go on inside!

It will cost a lot of money but by far the best sushi meal, and one of the better overall meals, that I've had. Not only did this meal contain one of those transcendent moments where you taste something that just makes you unreasonably happy, but it happened 3 or 4 times (and the rest of the pieces were pretty darned wonderful, just not transcendant!)

I was with a friend that spent years living in Tokyo and regularly eats at some of the best sushi joints in Manhattan, and even they were blown away.

If you REALLY like sushi and are in Honolulu then this needs to be on the "must eat" list!

PS They do tell you when it's "recommended" to use soy sauce and when you shouldn't, but they were right, and it was done very politely and low key while explaining each piece. No shoyu-nazi ;)

  • Visited February 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank ourback
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Honolulu, Hawaii
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Mmmmmmmm Sasabune”
Reviewed 1 March 2012

Not cheap, but FRESH and the best sushi I've ever had.

Visited March 2011
Helpful?
2 Thank Tripster808
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Whitehorse, Canada
Level Contributor
437 reviews
238 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 201 helpful votes
“awesome omakase menu”
Reviewed 26 February 2012

Went for Valentines' Day dinner with my SO and was prepared for the worst. I had read reviews about the sushi nazi and how some people did not think it was worth it. We went b/c good friends recommended it.
The sushi was very tasty with some interesting flavour combinations. I have no problem with the chef asking me not to add soy sauce if he thinks it will drown the flavour - I don't think this makes him unreasonable - I think Eric Ripert would be equally upset if you took soy sauce and poured it over his fish! =)
We had a lovely meal and service was prompt. Even though we were drenched from a rainstorm coming in, the waiters were very professional.
We eat out a lot and all over the world (I know everyone says this) but I have also lived in Japan, and I thought this was a lovely meal with some excellent sushi. I don't know if it ranks among my top 5 meals - but if you're in Honolulu and you enjoy sushi, I would definitely make it a point to visit. It's not cheap but then again, we enjoyed it so much more than our trip to Alan Wong's.

Visited February 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank tropicalnorth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawaii
Level Contributor
16 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Fabulous sushi!”
Reviewed 13 February 2012

If you love sushi, this is the ultimate sushi experience! The combinations of the fish and various ingredients that they use are always fresh and extraordinary! The sushi and dishes are unique and flavors a wonderful surprise each time. The waiters are all very nice and quick- each dish is well presented and the ingredients used are carefully explained as to origin and how to eat the dish. Nice calm atmosphere... nice but not beautiful. It is a bit expensive but well worth the experience. Have never been disappointed each time we have visited. Reservations recommended..very busy each time we have been there.

  • Visited February 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank latHawaii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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