Sushi obsessives were floored by the news that Chef Naomichi Yasuda, founder, owner, and sushi chef behind the revered Sushi Yasuda in Midtown, will be leaving his post at the end of the year to open an eight-seat sushi parlor in Tokyo. Now, the Times gets some new details on his departure, and how the shakeup will affect the day-to-day operations at the restaurant.
Yasuda has named his replacement, 37-year-old Mitsuru Tamura, who came to the restaurant seven years ago with little sushi experience, and has basically been taught everything he knows under the tutelage of the legendary chef. One of the restaurant's partners, Scott Rosenberg, notes "Mitsuru is the only one he trusted." Tamura has made it very clear that he plans to stay there for the long haul.
As for life at the sushi parlor after Yasuda's departure, partner and manager Shige Akimoto is confident that nothing will change, remarking "We are going to be Yasuda-style sushi forever." Chef Yasuda will probably be in the house for the next two weeks or so, before heading to Japan, stopping back in New York early next year and then leaving for good. And for those that want to get in good with the new chef, apparently he just goes by "Mitsuru."
· A Lineup Change at Sushi Yasuda [NYT]
· Chef Yasuda Leaving New York to Open Restaurant in Japan [~ENY~]