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Fukuoka

Sushidokoro Ishibashi

鮨処石ばし

Make your way to Sushidokoro Ishibashi to savor Kyushu’s delicious sake and cuisine. Exuding a love for all things local, this place is loved by residents and out-of-towners alike for its successful formula that adds incredible craftsmanship to exquisite ingredients, and all served with a generous brush of heartwarming hospitality.

Located in Fukuoka on the southern island of Kyushu, home to some of Japan’s best seafood, Sushidokoro Ishibashi is now in its tenth year. The chef’s friendly personality, relaxed hospitality, a focus on local ingredients, and pride in one’s place serve as a beacon for visitors to Fukuoka. The restaurant is in the Akasaka neighborhood, where Ishibashi was raised, a part of the city with an even mix of homes and businesses. Five years after opening, the chef completely renovated the ground floor restaurant to create an even more hospitable space.

The striking exterior design features glass with an ornamental timber design in the auspicious Japanese pattern of hemp – loved since long ago as a healthy and hardy plant. Passersby can see the warm light within the restaurant, and when the blinds are drawn, the hemp leaf pattern casts a beautiful shadow. The characters on the noren shop curtain and signboard are those of the chef’s former master, Hitoshi Yoshitomi. The restaurant's centerpiece is an eight-seat L-shaped counter. While typically made from untreated timber, Ishibashi purposely chose keyaki Japanese zelkova wood to add a sense of warmth and comfort. There is a traditional woven bamboo ceiling and calligraphy work by a friend featuring the character for “meet”, showing the chef’s personality and his practice of treasuring every encounter.

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CUISINE

A love for all things local

Chef Ishibashi truly values the many people instrumental in creating this space, including the suppliers of fresh ingredients and tableware and his former master, who gave him the foundation as a sushi chef. His chef’s course is about showing guests the best the local Kyushu waters have to offer. It opens with the chef’s signature dish of tender simmered octopus. Fished in the Genkainada Straits of Kyushu, the chef massages it with salt and then freezes it for one day, a process passed down by the chef’s master that breaks down the fibers to tenderize the flesh. What follows is a series of appetizer dishes like Oita Prefecture thread-sail filefish dressed in liver sauce, made by cleaning and passing through a sieve for a smooth, velvety texture.

Ten to twelve pieces of nigiri and maki come next before the meal closes with a belly-warming soup and the rolled egg omelet – a luscious mouthful with a cheese-cake-like texture containing umami-rich pastes made from kurumaebi shrimp and scallops. For the nigiri, the fish is prepared either fresh, rested or cured to maximize flavor and texture. Fukuoka sea bream is cured with salt to extract moisture over two days. A 60-kilogram Goto Island bluefin tuna is brought to the restaurant and rested for three days before service. The luxuriant tuna appears in the course twice in different forms, both unforgettable. Gizzard shad from Amakusa, Kumamoto, is cured in salt and vinegar for one day. In contrast, the horse mackerel from Munakata, Fukuoka, is served fresh, not cured.

For all, Ishibashi declares that 80% of the flavor comes down to the rice ovals lying beneath the fish. He chooses rice with conspicuous grains, umami and sweetness, to which he adds a blend of two akazu red vinegars. The ovals gently fall apart, having imparted their warmth to the seafood, melting the fat for the perfect dreamy mouthful every time. While Kyushu is often associated with sweet soy sauces to pair with seafood, Ishibashi’s nikiri is a reduction of kombu and bonito dashi, soy sauce and mirin, with a sharp, distinctively Edo-style flavor that he feels is in perfect balance with the seafood.

Local Kyushu sake and others from around Japan share equal space in the beverage lineup, so it’s a great chance to share your preferences and let the chef choose the perfect libation for you.

INGREDIENTS
All the seafood served here is freshly fished in ocean waters surrounding Kyushu and supplied by a sole-trading fishmonger in the neighborhood. Another lesson from Ishibashi’s master that has been put into practice here is a focus on using local ingredients. While all exquisite, spring means especially delicious white-flesh fish and shellfish, and in summer, it’s the akauni sea urchin. Autumn brings sumptuous Japanese Spanish mackerel and modorigatsuo — the bonito returning south to spend the cold winter months in warmer southern waters. Sumptuous white and blue fish varieties abound in winter.

The rice ovals that carry all those delicious seafood ingredients are made from a variety called Tajima Muraoka-mai, completely hand-planted and grown in the terraced rice fields of Hyogo Prefecture. The grains are full and bulbous, and the flavor experience is one of rice’s innate sweetness. They are flavored with Yokoi Brewery’s Kohaku and Yohei red vinegar, which are made from the finest sake lees in eastern Tokyo.

Sushidokoro Ishibashi cuisine #0
Sushidokoro Ishibashi cuisine #1

CHEF

Tetsuto Ishibashi

Tetsuto Ishibashi was born in Fukuoka in 1990. At age 16, he joined a restaurant of Western cuisine in Fukuoka, watching the chef’s every move as he worked. He grew more interested in Japanese cuisine and made the move after spotting a job ad posted by long-time Fukuoka sushi favorite Yoshitomizushi, thus launching himself into a sushi career. He honed his skills under the master over six years before deciding to go independent when he learned that he and his wife would be welcoming a second daughter.

Sushidokoro Ishibashi opened in 2014 when the chef was just 24 years old. He serves exquisite sushi to his guests in a setting where he always prioritizes a comfortable atmosphere for smooth communication. It is a lesson learned from his former master: guests should always go home saying what a delicious meal it was, but you know you have succeeded when you hear that guests had fun. Now a father of four children, Ishibashi places great importance on exploring new places and foods, often venturing to Tokyo to enjoy tastes around the town for stimulation and inspiration across all genres.

VISION
Ten years have passed since Sushidokoro Ishibashi’s opening. The chef’s vision is singularly to carefully maintain the space he has created. He plans to keep shaping sushi as long as he is physically able.

TABLEWARE / WINE

The dish and glassware collection contains an array of items that have made their way here through precious personal connections. The pottery pieces are items of Karatsuyaki made by Yotaro Fujinoki of Doheigama in the quiet mountain area of Saga Prefecture. He came to dine here two or three times after the restaurant’s opening and suddenly, one day, offered sake cups to Ishibashi to use for service. The friendship developed from there, and now Ishibashi enjoys visits to the kiln. The brilliant glassware is the work of Hideki Yamamoto — a friend of the master at Yoshitomizushi. They offer the perfect drinking experience of crisp, clear sake.

Course

LUNCH (12PM only)
Sushidokoro Ishibashi Lunch only course menu
  • The price includes our booking fee of ¥8,000
  • The price includes our booking fee of ¥8,000
¥18,500
¥18,500
Reservation Request
DINNER (6PM-8PM Last Entry)
Sushidokoro Ishibashi Dinner omakase menu
  • The price includes our booking fee of ¥8,000
  • The price includes our booking fee of ¥8,000
¥34,500
¥34,500
Reservation Request

Fukuoka

Sushidokoro Ishibashi

鮨処石ばし

PRICE
¥18,500
~
CHILD
0
& UP
LUNCH
OPEN
MIN GUESTS
1
PERSON
~
GENRE
Sushi, Akasaka
ADDRESS
1F, 〒810-0042 Fukuoka, Chuo Ward, Akasaka, 1 Chome−2−6
OPEN
Lunch: 12PM-, Dinner: 6PM-8PM (Last Entry)
CLOSED
Sunday and holidays
URL
NA
PHONE
NA

RESERVATION

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