Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011) by David Gelb
A documentary to make your mouth water
In a basement of Ginza in Tokyo hides a small sushi restaurant, Sukiyabashi Jiro. This seemingly low-key business is managed by Jiro Ono, an internationally recognized sushi chef awarded three Michelin stars.
Passion within reach
This American documentary that premiered in 2011 in the United States and in 2012 in Japan tells the daily life of an unusual restaurant. Jiro Ono, now 91 years old (85 when filming), talks of the passion that marks his daily life: making sushi. Jiro started in the profession at an early age and is now considered the best sushi chef in the world - and a national treasure. The chef works his magic in a small restaurant of just a dozen seats, located in the Tokyo subway. In "Sukiyabashi Jiro", there is no place for the superfluous. It's a minimalist, almost modest place, and is the first site of its kind to receive three Michelin stars since Michelin launched in Japan in 2008.
Generations of craftsmen
In the Sukiyabashi Jiro, sushi is a family affair: the chef's two sons, Yoshikazu and Takashi, are also shokunin or sushi artisans. Takashi, the youngest, has left the business in Ginza to open a branch in the Roppongi Hills neighborhood, while Yoshikazu, the eldest, is still working with his father. Jiro Ono has been preparing sushi all his life, but says that despite the years "he has not achieved perfection ". To do his job, says Jiro, "you have to fall in love with it and try to improve every day".
Thanks to this elegantly-filmed documentary you can discover the workings of a restaurant like no other, the search for perfection, and witness a discipline turned into passion.
Sukiyabashi Jiro 4-2-15 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-0061. Reservation is required (months in advance). Price: from 30,000 yen.
Trailer for the movie "Jiro Dreams of Sushi," YouTube video