Kappa Sushi, Kura Sushi, and Sushiro. Which pairs best with contemplating past mistakes?

It’s Friday night. It’s been a long week. The last thing you want is to stay at work one minute longer, but the thought of returning to your cold, empty apartment isn’t exactly welcoming either. All you really want is some sushi and a couple of drinks. And you want them alone.

But the question is, where do you go?

We’ve already seen the best overall kaiten (conveyor belt) sushi restaurant in Japan, but going out for a boisterous time with friends and family is quite a different experience than by yourself. You have different expectations, desires, and needs.

▼ Thankfully our Japanese-language reporter Momo is an expert at going out drinking
by herself and was happy to do the research.

In Japan there are several chain kaiten sushi restaurants, but three are probably the most well known: Kappa Sushi, Kura Sushi, and Sushiro.

So with an empty stomach, and an even emptier heart, Momo set out on her lonely adventure! Here are her results:

#3. Kura Sushi

It should be said that while it’s hard to go wrong picking a kaiten sushi restaurant to stare off into the infinite void at, someone had to come in last. And for this race it was Kura Sushi.

Figures the restaurant that caters to Valentine’s Day couples with chocolate “Tiramisushi” wouldn’t be a great place to go by yourself.

▼ Right off the bat, you have to get your own drinks from a fridge.
A major minus.

Self-serve drinks may not seem like a big deal, but it’s a detail that matters a lot more when you’re alone.

Not only is it annoying to get up from your seat, but you also have to worry about your belongings that you either leave behind or lug with you. Not to mention the fact that when you’re alone, you want to be served, so you can feel special for just a little bit. Maybe even pretend that the waiter/waitress is your friend, and they’re bringing you a drink. Until they kick you out.

▼ The drinks were quite small and expensive. This Rich Highball (only available at
Kura Sushi) was just 150 milliliters (5 ounces) and it cost 350 yen (US$3.10)

But drinks aside, sushi is what matters most.  So how did Kura Sushi stack up?

▼ The yaki harasu (grilled fatty salmon belly) was pretty thin,
more like a skin than anything else.

▼ But the shime saba (cured mackerel) was pretty good…

▼ …and it’s hard to ever go wrong with maguro.

▼ Momo finished off with some fried corn fritters, which were fine but light on flavor.
Overall, Kura Sushi didn’t quite fill the alcohol-and-sushi-shaped hole in her heart.

#2. Kappa Sushi

Up next on the list is Kappa Sushi. Their menu ranges from the extremely expensive with $90 unagi sushi cake all the way down to to dirt-cheap 100-yen drinks, so it definitely had promise to satisfy our sad, sad soul.

▼ Unfortunately the Kappa Sushi near Momo didn’t have any 100-yen drinks, but the
633-milliliter (21-ounce) Asahi Super Dry beer was a steal at 480 yen (US$4.25).

▼ For those keeping track, compared to Kura Sushi, that’s four times the alcohol for only
an extra 130 yen. Let the liquid flow from the bottle! …and our tear ducts!

But what about the sushi? Thankfully, Kappa Sushi had our back in that department too.

▼ We started with ankimo (monkfish liver).
Its rich, sticky flavor paired perfectly with the bitter beer.

▼ Next was some fried-squid sushi. It was both crunchy and chewy. Delicious.

Aside from the disappointment of not having 100-yen drinks, the only negative for Kappa Sushi was that the rice wasn’t particularly great. It was a little spongy, and while not terrible, it did distract the taste buds a bit. Not something we wanted to happen while we were busy thinking about the one who got away.

▼ After all that, maybe it was the Asahi setting in,
but we just really felt like some ramen…

▼ …and a side of meat. What? Don’t judge! Just because we’re at a sushi restaurant doesn’t
mean we can only eat sushi. Ugh. This is exactly why we don’t go out to eat with anyone….

#1. Sushiro

Sushiro may have been part of some controversies in the past, with illicit filming taking place on its conveyor belts, and trying out conveyor-less conveyor-belt restaurants, but when it comes to going out drinking alone, they reign supreme.

▼ Sushiro had far and away the biggest selection of drinks, and they were the only one
with wine. It felt weird drinking it in a soda glass, but hey, we weren’t complaining!

▼ We ordered a crab-cream croquette to go with our drink and dear lord yes,
a marriage took place in our mouth. Warm fried goodness and cold wine… *chef kiss*

▼ We were already so satisfied that we only ordered one plate of sushi: seared salmon.
It was rich, fatty, and wonderful. You can’t go wrong at Sushiro.

So there you have it! Three restaurants, three drinks, and way too much sushi later, we went home with our souls feeling a little more full. Temporarily, anyway.

Of course we didn’t try everything at the restaurants, but looking at it from the perspective of flavor, price, and alcohol, Sushiro is the winner with Kappa Sushi a close second. Kura Sushi is fine, but it’s definitely more of a family restaurant than a place for solitary imbibement.

Wherever you go though, just be sure that you choose to end your sushi experience on the correct piece.

Photos: ©SoraNews24
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