Jiro Dreams of Shushi ****1/2
I don’t know for sure how long this 81 minute film, documentary, is going to be around in DC (it’s here now), but if you like sushi, then definitely make time to see it.
It’s the story of a sushi restaurant in a Tokyo subway station that has earned a three star Michelin review.
Actually, it more about its owner and chef, 85-year old Jiro Ono. His 10-seat, sushi only restaurant, apparently made famous by a restaurant reviewer(s), is a very expensive, call-a-month-in-advance sushi bar that folks come from far beyond Tokyo to ‘dine.’
This man, this chef, is the definition of a perfectionist, and, even at his current age, apparently continues to work at perfecting his sushi offerings.
It is also the story of his two sons. His elder one will one day succeed him but has ‘apprenticed’ for at least 30 years. His younger son has established his own restaurant elsewhere in Tokyo.
The film is fascinating as a study of Jiro, what he has created, what drives him, and how and why he continues to develop his restaurant. It is also fascinating from the point of view of the father-son(s) relationship(s).
Even if you don’t like sushi, the film will make your mouth water and give you an appreciation for someone who does his craft well.
I heard about this on NPR last month and thought it sounded fascinating, but got a good tip that massaging octopi for an hour is what will make the texture better… Anyway, we’ll probably check it out at some point- likely at home while eating sushi so we aren’t elsewhere salivating on strangers. :)