Like sushi on a conveyor belt, the hands of time continue to turn.

Prices have been steadily going up for a while now in Japan so a lot of our writers have been constantly searching the land for the few oases of value when it comes to getting food and drink. This exploration has brought our reporter Mr. Sato to Taisei, a revolving sushi restaurant in Tachikawa, Tokyo.

He had eaten here in February last year and enjoyed a meal for just 500 yen (US$3.44) including tax, so he wondered how tenaciously Taisei had managed to cling to their low prices in this current economy. He immediately found out upon leaving the Tachikawa Station South Exit and reading the banner hung in front of the restaurant.

▼ “Weekday Limited Lunch 580 yen (638 yen with tax)”

So it looked as if Taisei too had fallen victim to rising food costs, but 580 yen ($3.99) – even before taxes – was still a pretty good deal, so he decided to go in anyway.

First, he grabbed a plate of their classic atsuyaki tamago (Thick Fried Egg) off the conveyor belt for 180 yen.

True to its name, it was very thick and thoroughly soaked with a sweetly seasoned broth. It was so sweet that Mr. Sato might even consider it a dessert.

Next, he ordered the advertised 580-yen lunch combo which included five pieces of sushi and a bowl of shrimp miso soup.

The lumps of vinegared rice were a little small, which made them easy to pick up. He imagined that they would make a great side dish to nibble on while enjoying a beer.

As he ate, Mr. Sato also admired how sober the presentation of Taisei’s sushi was. There was nothing flashy or attention-grabbing about it – just reliably good sushi at a low price.

This was interesting to our reporter because the revolving sushi industry has become rather saturated in recent years and competition is fierce. Despite this and other social crises that have affected the dining format in recent years, Taisei seemed to stay the course and not rely on gimmicks or trends.

Even after his lunch plate, Mr. Sato felt like eating some more so he also grabbed a plate of shima aji (striped jack) for 350 yen and chu-toro (fatty tuna) for 450 yen.

▼ Shima aji

▼ Chu-toro

All in all, he racked up a bill of 1,661 yen ($11.42) and headed to the register to settle up. However, after he finished paying and was about to leave the store the cashier called out to him. She was a very energetic worker and our reporter appreciated how she enthusiastically greeted all the customers but didn’t know what she wanted this time.

When he walked back to the cash register, he could see her furiously preparing something. She then handed him what he assumed would be some kind of point card…

▼ “Senior Pass (Five-Percent Off)”

As he looked at it, the clerk said to him: “Please use this next time you come, sir. You can use it at any restaurant!”

Of course, he appreciated the discount and he could feel that this woman was sincerely hoping he would come again and enjoy a good deal on sushi. She really didn’t seem to have a mean bone in her body, but when Mr. Sato read the fine print, it was just too much to bear.

▼ “For those over 60 years old…”

Mr. Sato: “Um… I’m not over 60.”

Clerk: “Oh my gosh! I’m so sorry. But you can still feel free to use it, if you don’t mind.”

It was still a nice offer and Mr. Sato was under no illusion that he was still a spring chicken. Given that, the sincere attempt at customer service outweighed the slight blow to his ego.

▼ “Taken to commemorate Hidenori Sato at 49 years old”

While still not a senior, he reached that special milestone in life where he became old enough to be mistaken for a senior. Still, he wasn’t in this zone comfortably enough to use senior discounts under false pretenses, so he decided to hold on to the card until he turned 60 for real.

At least he had decided it until realizing that the card was only valid until 21 August, 2023. It was probably for the best since there wasn’t a Taisei near his home anyway. He’ll definitely return someday though, because it had very good sushi at a very good price served by a very friendly staff.

Restaurant information
Itamae Kaiten Sushi Taisei Tachikawa South Exit Store / 板前回転寿司たいせい 立川南口店
Address: Tokyo-to, Tachikawa-shi, Nishikicho 1-3-29, Kamoshima Bldg. 1F
東京都立川市錦町1-3-29 鴨志田ビル1F
Hours: 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. (9:30 p.m. on weekends and holidays)

Photos ©SoraNews24
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