Hilly Noe Valley is the perfect setting for this jewel of a sushi restaurant, and lest you have an original idea, the line here will thwart you in your tracks. The menu is thoroughly Japanese, with a few California touches—think grilled shishito peppers tossed with crunchy daikon in a ponzu dressing. Be sure to start with the signature tempura-fried seaweed cracker topped with spicy tuna and avocado. Then, perfectly sized tasting spoons of seared ankimo with scallions, as well as halibut tartare with yuzu make for delightful quick bites. Though rolls are available, regulars opt for the nigiri, which might include kampachi, baby snapper, and snow crab. If you'd like the chefs to choose, several omakase (including an all-salmon variation) are also on offer.
- MICHELIN guide inspectors