Five Best Omakase Spots: Chef Chooses at Nobu, Blade, Macchialina, Naoe, Copperbox
Sometimes ordering can be difficult. We hate having to make the difficult decision between a delicious pasta or a cut of meat. We worry the table next to us will order exactly what we should have. Sometimes though, we're lucky enough to have a compatible dining companion who's willing to share a few plates, and a great server that works with us to create the perfect order.
Blade's Fontainebleau Roll
Placing that perfect order is rare, but it doesn't have to be. Options such as chef's selection, daily special or omakase (the Japanese version of a chef's selection which literally means to 'entrust') take away the pressures of choosing the best combination, and entrust this task to our chef. Often times, we'll get more for our money and are enabling our chefs to reach their full culinary potential -- they are the experts after all.
More and more, Miami chefs are asking diners to just trust them. When we got the news that the Fontainebleau's sushi bar, Blade, was adding an omakase dinner to its menu, the timing couldn't have been more perfect. This Short Order writer had spent the last few days binge watching David Chang's Mind of a Chef, and with close to eight hours of straight-up Asian-inspired food porn under my belt, I was ready to taste and explore whatever the chefs at the Blade had planned. What we got was eight courses of perfectly paired, fresh and thoughtful dishes starting with a ginger-infused tuna tartar served over crispy filo dough sticks that made a playful nod to spaghetti and meatballs.
Blade Tuna Tatar Blade's Sushi and Sashimi platter
It was clear right from the start that half the fun of omakase was interacting with our chef and witnessing his spontaneity first hand. The other half was the freshness. It was as if our fish had been swimming earlier that day -- in fact it had been. Dishes progressed from light to heavy and included asparagus wrapped in Madai, AKA fresh snapper topped with chimi-yuzo mash, mussels served in broth that took over an hour to make, sea salt cold-smoked salmon, a generous sushi and sashimi platter, and the popular Fontainebleau role. After almost three hours, we had tasted a vast selection of the offerings and were not the least bit envious of the gargantuan rolls being ordered by the rest of the restaurant that only demonstrated a fraction of what the chefs were capable of creating. The omakase dinner is available for $95 and is offered exclusively at Blade's intimate 10-seat sushi bar from 5 to 10 p.m.; reservations are required 24 hours in advance.
Blade's offering of an omakase dinner alongside a traditional menu is perfect for those who want the chef to take the wheel, but take comfort in knowing there a safety menu waiting in the wings. Diners looking to ease into trusting their chefs can check out Macchialina's five-course chef selection for $45 a person.