Sakura Kaiten Sushi is an original. When they opened their doors ten years ago, they were one of the first culinary teams to bring the quick, quirky and exciting dining experience to our food-crazed city.
Things escalated pretty quickly. In the kitchen, award-winning chef Kenichi Hayashi was fresh out of Tokyo, where hed just been name a sushi champion. The debut Sakura Kaiten Sushi menu was traditional, prepared with seafood sourced from Japanese-operated suppliers that catch, handle and transport the fish in a way that preserves its quality specifically for sushi.
Kenichi still sources his premium seafood from those specialty suppliers. Sakura Kaiten Sushi receives a delivery of fresh seafood every morning so that Kenichi can spend his day cutting and slicing in the slow, careful, almost loving way that Japanese sushi chefs are famous for.
True to kaiten-zushi tradition, plenty of raw dishes make their way around the conveyor belt salmon sashimi, tuna nigiri, melt-in-your-mouth wagyu tataki. But at Sakura Kaiten Sushi, youll also see a number of hot dishes travelling by, ready to be plucked from the train and devoured. And if you cant deal with the anxiety of dishes potentially disappearing from the train before theyve reached your table, youll love another one of Sakura Kaiten Sushis modern innovations.
Its called the Bullet Train. The brainchild of Kenichi, the Bullet Train is a tiny, super-fast train that zips out of the kitchen and delivers food directly to your table. The classic sushi-go-round system is all kinds of fun, but the Bullet Train allows you to hand-pick a range of dishes that families or groups of friends can tuck into at the same time.
After years of spilling onto the street, the Sakura Kaiten Sushi crew opened a second location on Lonsdale Street. Since opening in 2014, its grown to be just as popular as the flagship restaurant with careful coordination between Kenichis two kitchens.
The Sakura Kaiten crew has seen it all. Theyve seen people enter the restaurant as strangers and leave as friends. Theyve seen parties that plop cupcakes on the train for a parade around the dining room. Theyve seen a birthday present zoom directly to its recipient on the bright-red Bullet Train. Theyve even seen an engagement ring snake its way toward a table and arrive alongside a well-timed proposal.
What sort of story will you have to tell after eating at Sakura Kaiten Sushi?
Sakura Kaiten Sushi I
61 Little Collins Street, Melbourne VIC 3000 |(03) 9663 0898
Sakura Kaiten Sushi II
282 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne VIC 3000 |(03) 9077 1167