Minamishima is open from 6pm to 10pm, Tuesday to Saturday and is closed Sunday, Monday and on public holidays.
Omakase at the sushi bar and in the dining room is $185 per person.
Sake and wine pairings are also available for an additional $125 per person.
Reservations open two months in advance and are only accepted by phone between midday and 6pm, Tuesday to Saturday. For example, bookings for the month of November are accepted from 1st September.
At the heart of the omakase offering from sushi master Koichi Minamishima lies not only 25 years of experience, but also an increasingly rare culinary art form.
Patience was the first lesson Chef Koichi Minamishima learnt in a Japanese kitchen. His appreciation of produce was ignited the first time he visited the local fish market, but it took two years washing rice at a restaurant in the Aichi prefecture, Nagoya, before he was permitted to prepare food beside the sushi master. Five years later Chef Minamishima stepped behind the sushi bar, eventually making his way to Melbourne to become head chef at one of the city’s most lauded Japanese restaurants.
Eager to share the authentic, sushi-ya experience with the city he’s called home for 15 years, Chef Minamishima set out to establish his own restaurant. Following a year reconnecting with his Japanese roots, Minamishima opened in 2014 with one, simple goal: to fill each customer with joy through the art of sushi.
Tucked down a one-way street in Richmond is Minamishima, the most intimate Japanese dining experience in Melbourne. Omakase involves placing faith in the integrity of the chef. There is no a la carte menu; this is a journey through a progression of courses with the utmost focus on texture, balance and appearance – as decided by the chef.
Minamishima’s omakase is produce-driven, focusing on raw ingredients as they come into season. There are two dining options. At the sushi bar a seasonal entree is served to whet the appetite, followed by sushi presented to the diner one piece at a time. Broth and a traditional dessert follow.
In the dining room the focus extends to the cooking method, from steamed through to grilled. Sushi is also presented but in harmonious groupings, via traditional table service. A more intimate setting is also possible, courtesy of three private dining areas, each one can accommodate up to eight guests. Sake and wine pairings are available throughout the restaurant.
Local ingredients arrive daily from boutique farmers and visits to seafood markets. Chef Minamishima not only showcases the best of Australia, but also that of Japan, seasonally importing fresh seafood from Tokyo’s Tsukiji Market such as toro, kinki and sea eel, as well as shellfish like bafun uni from an island near Hokkaido and geoduck and Japanese cockle from his home in Aichi. Each piece of sushi is created so that the inherent characteristics of the key ingredient shine.