In Miami, the word “omakase” has become synonymous with dropping an astronomical amount of money on a lavish, exclusive 18-course sushi dinner. And, yes, there are places (like the wonderful Hiden) where you can do that. But there are also restaurants serving excellent chef’s choice sushi for under $100 a head. Like the seven places on this guide, which range from intimate counters in Little Havana to casual restaurants in Wynwood where you can spend as little as $24 on an omakase.
Some of Miami’s best sushi is being served inside a shiny, casual food hall in the Design District. That’s where you’ll find Sushi Yasu Tanaka, one of MIA Market’s nine vendors. The small sushi counter doesn’t take reservations, and you’ll probably want to stop by for lunch since they close at 7pm Sunday through Thursday and 8pm Friday and Saturday. The 10-piece omakase platter costs $59 and will consist of absolutely perfect rice, beautifully prepared fish, and (hopefully) at least one of their incredible hand rolls.
Both the 10 and 14-course omakase options at this small Downtown sushi counter come in under $100 (at least before service, taxes, and sake). The 10-course costs $69, and the 14-course is $89. You will need to make a reservation and put down a deposit in advance. But not only is the price better than most upscale omakase options in Miami, the sushi will be too. Every piece of fish, uni, or beef that is put in front of you will get better and better and better, like a well-paced action movie. And at the end of the two-hour meal, you’ll be begging for a sequel.
Omakai has locations in Wynwood and Aventura. Both are casual enough for shorts, but still offer a solid omakase experience with options ranging from $24 to $74. When we went here, we did the $48 Oma Deluxe, which comes with 10 pieces of sushi, sashimi, an appetizer, and a couple hand rolls. Is it the best sushi in Miami? No. But it was all very good, more than enough to fill us up, and, all things considered, a great value. They do accept walk-ins, but a reservation still isn’t a bad idea.
If you would like an omakase that does not require you to leave your couch and also clocks in under $30, you have exactly one option: Poke OG. The good news: it’s a good option. Poke OG is one of our favorite sushi takeout experiences thanks to the quality and great packaging that even includes a little paintbrush so you can distribute your soy sauce with the precision of Bob Ross. Their Omakase Lite takeout box comes with 16 pieces of very good nigiri, sashimi, and maki.
Wabi Sabi, an excellent Japanese restaurant in the Upper East Side, has several omakase options - and none of them cost more than $100. The nigiri omakase ($100) comes with 14 pieces and one maki. The sashimi omakase ($75) comes with 14 pieces of fish. And the chirashi omakase ($41) is 12 pieces of sashimi served over a lovely bed of sushi rice. You can enjoy all of the above in Wabi Sabi’s quiet, low-key dining room, but they’re all available for takeout as well.
Ahi Sushi is right in the busiest part of Calle Ocho, and approximately the size of Duncan Robinson’s walk-in closet (we’re guessing, but it feels right). The sushi counter, run by the Lung Yai team, seats six to eight people comfortably, and they have several omakase options. The cheapest one is $90 and comes with eight courses of sushi that we really enjoyed. It’s not a super formal meal, so leave the suit and tie at home. One other good thing about this place that will also save you some money: it’s BYOB. So don’t worry about your tab increasing by 75% because you wanted sake.
An outstanding sushi spot that’s casual, affordable, and consistently excellent is rare in Miami. But Matsuri is exactly that kind of restaurant, which is probably why you will absolutely have to wait for a table at this classic Bird Road spot. It will, however, be very worth it. They have a few chef’s choice sushi platters. Go for the Masa Special. They offer a Masa Special for two people that includes 16 pieces of sashimi, nine pieces of sushi, and two rolls for $44. And the $66 Masa Special for three includes 24 pieces of sashimi, 15 pieces of sushi, and three rolls. Every bite will make you glad you waited 46 minutes for the table.
Su-Shin Izakaya is a Japanese restaurant in Coral Gables perfect for a quick lunch or easy dinner. Sushi takes up most of the menu, and while they don’t have a formal omakase option, they do have a few really good chef’s choice platters. Their Chika Special for two features more than enough assorted sushi and sashimi to fill you and a friend up. If you’re not starving (or dining solo and, in fact, starving) go for the $32 sushi/sashimi combo. It comes with 16 pieces of sashimi, six pieces of nigiri, and a soup or salad.
Sushi Ko is a Japanese spot on Bird Road that’s walk-in friendly and casual. It’s warm and comfortable inside, with wooden booths, counter seating, and a vaulted ceiling that sort of makes you feel like you’re inside a ship. It’s exactly the kind of place perfect for eating sushi and drinking a huge Sapporo served in a bucket of ice (which they also have). The sushi isn’t Miami’s best, but it’s good and they have an omakase option for just $60 per person. They only offer it Thursday through Saturday and they ask that you call to make a reservation at least a day in advance.
Toni's Sushi Bar
Toni’s Sushi is a great (and possibly the only) casual sushi choice in South Beach. Every piece of sushi here might not make you want to stand up and sing, but it’s a fun, casual, refreshingly un-sceney spot where you can drink sake, sit criss-cross on the floor, and enjoy some good, affordable sushi. The closest thing they have to an omakase here is the Toni’s Choice platter. There are several Toni’s Choice platter options: for one person ($42), two people ($67), or three people ($95). All come with a combination of sushi, sashimi, and maki.