Yes, you read that right. It’s $0.80 per piece.
A subsidiary of the more upmarket Akashi at Paragon, Sushi Goshin at Suntec City Mall offers relatively affordable Japanese cuisine without compromising on the quality. As of last year, Sushi Goshin has been running an $0.80 per piece promotion for selected items from their sushi menu.
This places Sushi Goshin firmly into the budget sushi category that’s been dominated by a couple of well-known conveyor belt sushi chains. However, while the prices are the same, the difference in quality is remarkable. Instead of being ‘popped’ out by machines, every piece of nigiri (sushi rice with topping) is hand-molded. As a result, the rice yields an enjoyable soft and chewy texture rather than being cold and hard.
With this, waiting times during peak lunch and dinner hours for sushi can take longer but I would gladly endure it for hand-molded sushi that’s made to order.
At Sushi Goshin, your orders are made through an iPad attached to every table. The interface works well and ordering through it was no hassle at all.
The kimono-clad waitresses and wooden furnishings gave off the vibe of a traditional Japanese restaurant. Aside from tables, counter seats are also available should you wish to see the sushi chefs up close in action.
To tide us over during our wait for the sushi, we decided to order some rice bowls first. A relatively new addition to their menu, the Unagi Foie Gras Don ($12) came in a half serving.
Rich and unctuous, the combo was well-conceived and had an extremely decadent mouthfeel.
Both the eel and foie gras were lightly torched and exuded a light hint of smoky fragrance. The first spoonful really packed a powerful punch of umami as it melted in our mouths.
The crunchy cucumber strips were much-needed in order to stave off palate fatigue. This is probably why only a half portion was served, a full portion would have been too much for anyone to finish by themselves.
Overall, the Unagi Foie Gras Don was a great start to our meal but should be ordered for sharing.
Next up was the Kurobuta Katsu Don ($22). Served in a full portion as part of a set meal, it came with miso soup, pickles, two pieces of chicken karaage and watermelon slices as well.
While on the slightly pricier side, this bowl was definitely worth it. Even while being drenched by the egg-onion-dashi stock combo, the pork cutlets still yielded a commendable crunch and were very tender.
I personally tend to shun pork katsu options outside because the meat tends to come from the loin. This means lean and dry meat that gets further accentuated by its traditionally thick cut. But there was none of that here as each piece had a nice meat-to-fat ratio.
When eaten together with rest of the ingredients, this rice bowl was really simple but well-executed. You cannot go wrong with this.
Now, for the main attraction of the day: the $0.80 sushi. They arrived in waves as we ordered them periodically throughout the night.
We had the Salmon Gunkan (front), Tobiko (left) and Ikura (back).
The Salmon Gunkan was firm and slightly chewy, with the seaweed and spring onions providing a refreshing texture. It would have been even better if the seaweed was lightly toasted just before serving to really up the ‘crunch’ level but I wouldn’t fault them for this considering the price point.
The Tobiko (flying fish roe) was quite enjoyable, slightly salty and popped in my mouth as I slowly chewed it. The generous portion of Ikura (salmon roe) resulted in a burst of ocean-y brininess that was both enjoyable and slightly scary. (I was afraid of the juices spilling out!)
The Aburi Hotate (seared scallop) arrived with a dab of sweet chili sauce and spring onions for garnish. Slightly firm due to the torching process, I would recommend this for those who find raw scallop too intimidating to try.
The raw Hotate (scallop) sushi, in comparison, was my preferred choice. Light, clean and slightly sweet, a tiny dab of wasabi and soy sauce went a long way in highlighting its simple and natural flavour.
In this plate, we had the Salmon (left), Salmon Belly (back) and Aburi Salmon Sushi (right). Starting with the Salmon, it was fresh, clean-tasting and generously sliced. Yummy.
The Salmon Belly here is truly a steal as most places usually charge a premium for the belly portion. With thick lines of fat running through, it brings a fuller and creamier mouthfeel compared to the normal salmon.
However, the piece that I suspect will keep people coming back has to be the Aburi Salmon. Sliced thickly, there is a discernible layer of the torched and raw parts of the fish — unlike some other places that torch thinly sliced fish, which then gets you a completely cooked through piece of fish on top of having a bad fish-to-rice ratio. None of those shenanigans here.
Arriving lightly seared and glistening with its own melted oils, the Aburi Salmon just melted in my mouth the moment I popped it in. The furikake (Japanese seasoning made with dried fish, seaweed and sesame seeds) on top was a thoughtful addition to the fish that further heightened its aroma.
Absolutely delightful. Definitely the best nigiri of the night.
For its price, the quality of food that Sushi Goshin serves is truly commendable. Things like having the furikake on the Aburi Salmon, and serving all the sushi pieces on warmed plates in order to keep the rice soft and chewy reveals an attention to detail and the chefs’ pride in their food.
The only gripe I would have is that for some of the aburi sushi, the torching angle was a little too low which resulted in the rice being slightly burnt as well. A mistake that I’m sure is easily fixable.
Overall, I can’t recommend this place enough to those looking for cheap and good sushi. With its soft, well-vinegared rice and generous slices of fish, Sushi Goshin is definitely go-to spot for sushi cravings on a budget.
Expected Damage: $12 – $20 per pax (only sushi), above $24 with ala carte mains