Conveyor belt sushi restaurants are like an amusement park. Chefs put plates of sushi on a belt and let it ride it out until they’re grabbed by a salivating customer. The point is that it’s fun and you don’t have to order anything. The food automatically comes to you. Sounds like a fat-ass’s dream, right? If nothing on the belt is to your liking, you can order specific plates to the chef and they’ll give it to you directly.
I was so overwhelmed at the idea of finally doing this in Japan; I’d been wanting to try it for years. There is a picture for every plate I consumed, and I tried my best to identify what they were. Most of the times, I didn’t know what I had picked up from the belt until I actually ate it.
I ate rotating sushi at two locations in Japan. This post is for the first location:
- Heiroku Sushi, at Omotesando shopping street (Harajuku area), Tokyo
- Genrokuzushi (at Dotonbori, Nanba area), Osaka.
Heiroku Sushi has prime location, right on the Omotesando shopping street in Harajuku. Their prices for each plate is 130 yen, 170, 230, 290, 390, 490, and 590 depending on the plate’s color. If you want to go budget, you can pick on the 130 and 170 yen plates, but if you want to eat some of the more expensive fish, you will be picking up the 390, 490 plates. Your experience can be as expensive as you want it to be.
See the different colored plates that signify different prices. The pricing system is very transparent. Pricing signage is up on the walls, and you can see a sticker of it on the booth counter, as in the photo above.
Tea and gari (pickled ginger) is self-serve. I tried both types of tea, one was regular green tea and the other had a more roasted flavor. The metal spout thing on the right side of the photo is where you can get boiling hot water for your tea. Press the black button with your tea cup and hot water comes out. Make sure your hand/fingers are out of the way. When in doubt, ask for help; better than burning your hand.
I made myself some green tea. I grabbed this plate of Tamago. It’s like a spongy and sweet egg cake. Usually comes with rice, but this one didn’t. Since it’s sweet, I saved this for dessert and ate it at the end. I thought I had to grab it when I saw it, as I may never see it again. I didn’t have to do that, because there was never a shortage of this on the belt during the hour I was there.
Grilled shrimp with sauces and topped with tobiko (flying fish roe). Yum.
Torched sardines. It fell apart/melted in my mouth. SO good. The white stuff is grated daikon (radish).
They have a menu and you can custom order. Just say, “Semimasen” to get the sushi chef’s attention.
Mackerel. I like how pungent mackerel sushi is…It’s sweet, salty AND sour, and I love the texture.
Oh man, I forgot what this was! I do remember that I didn’t like it.
This was popular with the tourists. It’s basically finely chopped odds and ends of fish, squid, tobiko, green onion and celery smothered in thick white sauce (mostly mayo). This mixture is put on the rice and wrapped with seaweed. It was very rich, and had so many different textures.
I finished off the meal with the Tamago that I had grabbed earlier. After I put the empty plate on top of my plate-tower that I had going on, I called the attendant over and she counted the plates and gave me my bill. You’re supposed to bring the bill up to the cashier to pay; rarely in Japan do they make you pay at the table where you ate.
I mostly went to Heiroku because I was hungry and happened to pass by it during my walk on the famous Omotesando shopping street. It’s been around for a long time, judging by the weathered and battered-down plates and decor. The food was meh, but it was my first conveyor belt sushi experience, so it will have a special place in my heart.