Opened in 2018, Miyabi is the third opening of chef Hiko Ochiai, whose fame now precedes him. Known for his previous successes in the restaurant business in the city of Bergamo (his are the namesake Miyabi and the twin Kura), Hiko san has a great experience behind the sushi counter: his training boasts Roppongi Sushi Suzuki, Sushi Kikugi and well known to the passionate cinephiles Niashiazabu Gonpachi (so to speak, it is the two-storey wooden venue that inspired Quentin Tarantino for Kill Bill).
Together with his wife Noriko Ikeda (a teacher at the ABC Cooking Studio in Hong Hong and an expert pastry chef - she is in charge of the restaurant desserts), the chef therefore embarked on this new adventure in Milan some time ago. Its great preparation and the obsessive attention to the raw material in respect of the same in preparation have immediately made it a point of reference for lovers of raw fish.
What surprises of this restaurant is certainly its being an authentic Japanese with the intelligence of knowing how to dare in a conscious way. There are many uramaki on the menu, a gargantuan list dotted with variations and sauces (all prepared by the chef) that could make classic nigiri lovers pale - like me, for that matter. But I wanted to dare, I decided to want to taste everything without being arrested by preconceptions. And honestly I can say that I did well: Hiko san does not get lost in absurd pindaric flights, even where the taste should go too far towards fusion, thanks to the fresh raw material and a moderate dose of sauces, the taste of sushi is not altered, but exalted. A delicacy and intelligence of this caliber brought me back to the memory of the noble Iyo, before he took the Michelin star, when he was still able to give emotions full of desire to dare with the awareness of not having to upset such an ancient tradition as that sushi.
I had a great time at Miyabi, that's the point. Sushi is really good, fresh and offered at a really fair price. Here, sooner or later, you have to stop and let yourself be pampered by the room staff, discreet and very kind, perhaps trying the most daring recipes right at the counter so you can also enjoy the preparation of your dish live. The environment, minimal but welcoming, is elegant and, in my opinion, perfect for a couple dinner, as well as for an informal lunch. After all, Miyabi can be translated as "elegance" and "courtesy", a name which, moreover, the couple of owners gave to their daughter.
The menu, as already widely anticipated, offers both great classics and numerous variations on the theme. Among the appetizers we find some salads and fried foods (Miyabi doesn't skimp on oil, rest assured). We then move on to one of the restaurant's flagships: the carpaccio. It is possible to choose it either mixed or of one fish taken individually, each recipe is embellished with ingredients combined ad hoc.
Passing through the tartar, sashimi, temaki and chirashi, you finally get to the uramaki. Hiko san manages to compose a praise of this rice roll through an assorted and quite inviting list. From the best known California, to futomaki in tempura, up to the chef's special ones, you are spoiled for choice. An advice? Dare. Dare and go back to Miyabi several times, because the choice is really wide.
And then finally nigiri, the great love of lovers of authentic Japanese cuisine. If I had not already dwelled long enough on the quality of the fish, I apologize, but I must reiterate for the umpteenth time that the freshness here is taken very seriously. The tuna belly is spectacular (ask why it is often offered off the menu), as well as raw shrimp.
Finally, there are some hot sautéed dishes (rice and noodles), teriyaki salmon and tempura.
The desserts are all inviting and handmade. I highly recommend trying matcha tiramisù, really good.
The wine list is very interesting and offers both Italian and foreign wines (I drank an incredible French Gewürztraminer).
At the end of this path that illustrates Miyabi's proposal, it is interesting to know that the restaurant also gives the possibility to choose between two tasting menus at a very advantageous price.
📍 Corso Monforte 26, Milan
📞 +39 02 3670 9380