Sushi, sushi everywhere

Sushi is arguably the most popular restaurant food at the moment, replacing pizza and burgers as the ‘go to’ for many people. It is especially popular in summer and spring, since it is cool, refreshing and light.


Here are some facts about sushi that you may not know and some of the best sushi restaurants around SA:

  • The original type of sushi originated in Southeast Asia and spread to south China before being introduced to Japan sometime around the 8th century.
  • Originally, sushi rice was used only  for the fermentation of the fish and was not eaten, but thrown away when the fish was ready to eat.
  • Almost 80% of all the bluefin tuna caught in the world is used for sushi and sashimi.
  • Not long ago, a sushi chef had to undergo ten years of training before working in a restaurant, however due to today’s high demand, they can begin working after two years.


  • The highest price ever paid for a sushi grade Bluefin Tuna was R 3 960 000 ($396 000) for a 754 pound fish  in 2011 at the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo
  • The California roll was invented in Los Angeles, by substituting a slice of avocado for tuna in a traditional maki roll.
  • It is not correct practice to dip rice into soy sauce, you should only lightly dip the fish part the sushi. Dipping rice into soy sauce is what causes it to disintegrate. You should also only eat the ginger in between sushi pieces, not with it. It is a palate cleanser.


Now that you’re all clued about sushi, here are some of the best spots around South Africa to get your sushi fix!

In Johannesburg, check out So Yum in Hyde Park for some South African style sushi. For a totally upmarket sushi experience, try Maximllien in Sandton for the ultimate decadence. Gwefey Tea House provides unique environment and is a trendy spot to hang out with friends while enjoying sushi and other asian cuisine.

In Pretoria, Koi  Restaurant and Sushi bar at Lynnwood bridge is a firm favourite with locals.

Durban sushi lovers swear by Green Mango, an institution all on it’s own. The Beluga chain has opened a store in Umhlanga Ridge, giving Durbanites the chance to experience for themselves what makes Beluga sushi so popular.

Cape Town is spoiled for choice with excellent sushi restaurants.  You can even get your sushi with a side of gorgeous seaside view at Umi on the Camps Bay strip.


Nuri Sushi Factory is a funky, fusion sushi bar making it’s mark in the Cape Town CBD. If you are feeling adventurous you can try one of their dessert sushi offerings which include peanut butter and chocolate!

Where is your favourite sushi place?

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