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While “can you give me the name of a good sushi restaurant in Milan?” may seem like a straightforward question, it’s a doozy. Milan is swarming with excellent Japanese restaurants all over the city, serving a varied clientele. These restaurants exploded on the scene, featuring both unusual fusion combinations and strictly traditional Japanese cuisine.
To avoid disappointing who you’re talking to, I would suggest asking a few questions about what matters to him/her for a 100% Flawless recommendation. Do you like trying new things, or are you a staunch traditionalist? Do you eat only in the city center, or do you want to discover new places in Milan? Do you follow trends, or do you take advantage of unique opportunities? Do you hate noisy places, or are you an aspiring socialite?
I’m not suggesting putting them through a personality test, but to merely get to know what his/her tastes are. Be discreet and slightly analytical (but not too much), and soon you’ll be able to match everyone with the perfect sushi place! Of course, to clearly define a person’s culinary expectations, you’ll need to have a solid grasp on the Japanese restaurant scene in Milan.
To make things easier, I’ve put together the following list of my favorite sushi restaurants. These places stand out for their quality ingredients, professional service, sophisticated settings, and their ability to tell a story with their dishes, providing an unforgettable experience.
Via Gastone Pisoni, 1
Famous all over the world, Nobu restaurants are the undisputed symbol of Japanese cuisine at the highest level. Here in Italy this success was achieved thanks to a collaboration between Chef Nobu Mastuhisa and fashion designer Giorgio Armani. Refined atmosphere meets international mood: Nobu restaurant is a wise mix between worldliness and haute cuisine, a glamorous evening and a true taste experience that will take you from Asia to Europe, bordering South America also. It is no coincidence that Nobu became a cult restaurant in Milan and around the world.
Via Piero della Francesca, 74
Many things can be said about Iyo restaurant: refinement of its dishes, beauty of its location, the fact that it belongs to the Liu family, a guarantee when it comes to high-level Asian cuisine (just think that they also own Aalto, Iyo Omakase, Gong Oriental Attitude and BA Asian Mood). Yet, the following is the most important thing to say about Iyo: it is the only ethnic restaurant in Italy to boast a Michelin star. Commitment, research and determination of Chef Katsumi Soga, master at the sushi counter, and Giampiero Brotzu’s, led Iyo to achieve surprising results, to earn the deserved Michelin star and beat a small but meaningful record.
Via Giuseppe Parini, 7
Yoshinobu restaurant doesn’t attract attention, probably because it does not need it. No need for flashy signs, the dishes will speak by themselves about the traditions and flavors of the Land of Rising Sun. Chef Yoshi’s cuisine, to whom the restaurant owes its name, is authentic, fresh and genuine just like the restaurant’s interiors, white and essential. By tasting a sushi dish in this restaurant you’ll immediately understand that simplicity is the best tool to enhance goodness.
Cinquantadue – Taste Experience
Foro Buonaparte, 52
Armchairs and design furniture, bewitching golden leaves (or petals depending on the subject) hanging from the ceiling that seem eager to caress its guests, these are just clues that a lunch or dinner at the Japanese restaurant Cinquantadue is an occasion to remember. Cinquantadue offers an “evolved” Japanese cuisine, but doesn’t forget the tradition; in fact, talking of sushi can only be reductive in this case. Opened by Xiaobo Zhou (already owner of Nishiki, Milan’s creative sushi address) in 2018, the restaurant boasts Chef Sixia Li’s cuisine, offering his talent to discover all the excellent souls of Japanese cuisine.
Via S. Gerolamo Emiliani, 2
Finger’s Garden is one of the most famous sushi restaurants in the city, with a location that gifts you a unique dining experience midway between tradition and modernity (something typical in Japan). It is also the ideal place where to taste a cuisine that can be defined as an embrace between east and west. Whether for a romantic dinner for two, or an evening with friends, the wonder you’ll experience both with eyes and palate for their almost daring recipes will exceed every expectation thanks to the perfect harmony among ingredients, resulting in a triumph of taste and innovation.
Corso Italia, 6
An intense and full life that of Chef Wicky Priyan, founder of restaurant Wicky’s Wicuisine Seafood and inventor of a cuisine that is difficult to label, therefore even more flavourful and fascinating. Every dish here is a real trip around the world in which the most beloved flavors of Japanese tradition undergo a process of contamination quite rare in other restaurants, such as “Milanese sushi”, accompanied by traditional saffron risotto. Wicky’s Wicuisine Seafood presents itself as sober and refined because richness and inspiration are reserved for the menu, for overwhelming emotions to be enjoyed.
Via Feltre, 70
A house for harmony and balance where you can breathe (and especially taste) Japan’s purest essence. Restaurant Nu – Pure Asian developes on two floors: ground floor is dedicated to Japanese flavours while first floor is reserved for fusion cuisine. You’ll immediately perceive typical Japanese tradition and a relaxing atmosphere, especially in the tatami area, warmed by colours such as gold, amber and rust for an intimate and refined environment. Just sit and order for a moment of intense and exquisite taste that’ll score the maximum cum laude.
Viale Severino Boezio, 10
Elegant, modern and contemporary, perfect for a metropolis like Milan. Feel Fusion restaurant blends fantasy, oriental flavors, experimentation and constant research for high quality raw materials. You’ll just keep coming back to try and discovery new tastes, characterized by some interesting pairings that enchant the eye and delight the palate.
Via Panfilo Castaldi, 35
A special mention should be made for Elite, Kilburn’s elegant brother and the restaurant that brought to Milan and to Porta Venezia the unique combination of sushi and cocktails. Dinnertime at Elite translates into a parenthesis of pleasure, privacy and refinement, enhanced by the extremely limited number of seats. You will be the absolute protagonists of the staff’s attentions, who will advise you on the most appropriate drink for the dishes you’ve chosen. Uncompromising on the quality of raw materials, owner Alessio di Falco has studied with his partner Ennio Lettera and the kitchen staff a menu to highlight the freshness and aromas of the Mediterranean; note of merit for the many vegan and vegetarian variations.