Saturday, March 30, 2013

Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011)

This is an amazing documentary of one man's true passion. Jiro Ono is 85 years old and still works hard every day at his restaurant, a ten-seater sushi bar called Sukiyabashi Jiro.  Even though the restaurant only serves sushi (no appetizers, nothing else) and only has ten seats in the entire place, it was awarded 3 Michelin Stars, a dream come true for a chef.  Why? Because the sushi is that good.

One day, if I ever visit Japan, I will definitely go try out this place.  Reservations have to be made at least a month in advance, and the meal cost 30,000 yen (318 USD) a plate.  $318 for a few dishes of sushi! It had better be the best sushi in the world, and from I have heard from food critics' reviews, it is. But how can somthing so simple as fish and rice be so great? What makes it different from other sushi restaurants? Yamamoto, the food writer interviewed in the film, describes the flavor of the sushi as "Ultimate simplicity leads to purity".

Jiro and his older son work together to taste and select the fish. Only the best shrimp and fish are ever used. They even have a special rice dealer that ensures they get the best rice in the market. Trust me, rice can make or break a dish, especially if it's undercooked or poorly cooked.

Jiro's younger son opened up his own restaurant across town. His restaurant is doing well and he's happy to be his own boss. The older son, Yoshikazu, still works in Jiro's restaurant and had hoped to take over the business. However, Jiro will probably never retire. He is 85 and still restless to produce beautiful food.

The simple beauty of each sushi dish is absolutely stunning. The entire film is literally a visual feast. Please, try eating a full meal before watching this because it will make you very hungry! Film gets a 9/10.


  1. I spent most of this movie stunned at Jiro's level of attention to detail. It's not enough to get a good tuna... it has to be just right. Amazing. Very interesting little documentary.

  2. I saw this in the theater when it came out and absolutely loved it. I don't eat sushi (not crazy about the thought of raw fish) but the man's dedication to his art was so inspiring and the food was so beautiful that I was entranced.

  3. Besides the fabulous sushi - I also thought that this film was an incredibly interesting exploration of Japanese cultural tradition and Jiro's personal philosophy about purpose and happiness in life. Inspirational on many levels!