The Real Sushi Experience, Don't Miss Out!
Sushi is a fine cuisine, only perfected by years of experience
I always went to "kaiten sushi" because it was easy, you can calculate expense based on color and design of the plates and you could see what you are ordering as you take a plate off the conveyer belt. I still go to kaitenzushi when I want a scrumptious meal of sush (I want to eat a lot) or when I go with my family and want to keep cost controlled, but, the Sushi Bar or Sushi Restaurant with the Sushi Chef behind the counter making each savory piece for you should be considered the "Real" thing.
Sushi used to be made at an outdoor wagon called a Yatai and was considered a "fast food" in the olden days. Part of the fun of sushi was the interaction with the chef and the fact you could eat whatever was in season all the time. Sanma and Saba (blue fish) are the best is Fall, and other fish are good for other seasons (shell fish are especially yummy in Winter). The sushi chef would give you the freshest seasonal fish available on that day and you were able to enjoy each individual taste with a little explanation for why this one is actually the "catch of the day".
You may think that language might bar you from understanding the details of your sushi experience but even without understanding the explanation, the fact that a sushi bar or restaurant will place the freshest, seasonal sushi right in front of you, is enough. Just be a bit adventurous and say "Omakase" and then say however much amount you want to spend (maybe between 5000 and 10,000 yen) and the sushi chef will create some amazing "nigiri sushi" for you (nigiri is the name for the sushi that has fish on the top and rice on the bottom, sashimi is pure raw fish, and maki sushi is the rolled type, just FYI).
Oh-Maka-Se means "I leave it to you". Go for it, leave it to the Chef (they wont do this for you at the conveyor belt type) and see what amazing tastes are available this season.
Former Deep Japan Writer