Airing of Grievances: A Message from the Owner of Yushi

Yushi, Midtown NYC

I am all for giving readers a forum to complain about restaurants.  But if a restaurant wants to complain, I don’t have a problem with that.  Yesterday, this comment was posted by the owner of Yushi- a hip Japanese take out place on that I’ve written about twice since it opened.  The first time, I complained that while the food was clearly healthy, it was not filling enough for the price (i.e. I’m fat and need a lot of food.)  The second time, I was a little more gracious… admitting that the place didn’t entirely suck.  The owner chose to respond to my second post:

Mr Midtown Lunch,

I have only just seen your July 17th comments, i’m not even sure owners are mean’t to write here but what the hell. You initially said we were too expensive when we opened, FYI:

1. We haven’t raised prices in a year, unlike the rest of the world, even though rice has doubled in price, tuna is up 30% and salmon 25% etc

2. We set up My Yushi, it’s like a coffee card for sushi, basically a 10% discount without all the hassle usually associated with this kind of thing, you should try it

But wait, there’s more… 

About our maki rolls:

1. The weird tubes are actually designed to become a convenient little plate if your eating back at your desk.

2. The salmon and tuna we use is absolute Grade A, even in the makis, the expensive stuff that comes from the same suppliers as the top sushi restaurants, it comes in every day, sometimes twice a day, fresh, never frozen.

3. The comparison to “other pre-packaged sushi” is unfair. Check our products out, do you see a “packaged on” date? We make EVERYTHING fresh in the store throughout the day, not the day before at some factory in Queens.

Our Bentos never sit unsold for more than a couple of hours from when they are made, we throw them out otherwise, there’s even a time stamp on them, this way we keep things super fresh. So whilst technically pre-packaged, our format is more about being super convenient for our guests than mass production

Did you also know that all the salads, sauces and dressings are made by hand at the store everyday?

Our biggest mistake? Not having an open kitchen so everybody can see what goes on, we’ll fix that next time!

If you like a very filling lunch you might try the chicken teriyaki bento (we’re soon to add sweet miso and satay to this range) as they fall well under the $10 price point.

Watch this space for a few impossibly delicious new menu items we are soon to launch.



I’m still not sure why he chose to get this angry over a post titled “I Am Big Enough to Admit I Wasn’t Entirely Correct About How Much Yushi Sucks”. I was admitting that I found something I liked! Why so mad? I also never questioned the quality of your product… I even said it many times in both posts. There is no question about the quality. I’ll be happy to take your advice and try the $8 chicken teriyaki bento… sounds right up my alley. And if you introduce more items, feel free to let me know! I’ll be happy to post about them… in an honest, and balanced way.


  • I like how he addressed you! You da man; you are Mr. Midtown Lunch.

  • I am NOT “Luke,” should that thought come to your mind.

  • Actually, I don’t read his letter to you as “angry” or “mad.” I think he was just trying to explain their point of view and did so pretty matter of factly.

  • Can’t blame the guy for trying to market his wares….At least he’s not trying to fake us out with his identity. Mr. Luke, I would try your food—-or at least wouldn’t object to trying it based on the fact that you didn’t play us for fools.

  • Yeah, I too didn’t read it as filled with animosity. That’s the problem with these forms of communication, there’s no way to detect emotion :/ …oh, wait

  • I didn’t think he was angry either, maybe a bit brusque, or frustrated? Ah well, that’s pretty cool… the day a restaurant owner finds one of my negative reviews and comments, I may faint :)

  • I didn’t get anger from his post either. Funny, but I think I would be more inclined to try Yushi after he posted his comments.

  • He was actually quite professional, unlike the title of the post which originated this subject.

  • i’m w/ dan…i feel like getting myself a weird tube plate right about now.

  • Yes. He seemed very even-handed – I don’t really know where the anger is.

  • honest and balanced is good. as long as you’re not fair and balanced, b/c we know how that goes…

  • Sorry, I guess it was the “What the hell” in the first line that made me read the rest of it in an angry voice. And the fact that he called me Mr. Midtown Lunch. My dad is Mr. Midtown Lunch. I’m just Zach.

    Sorry! I take back calling him mad :-)

  • I would be worried about the “fresh never frozen part”

    Salmon should always be frozen before being used in sushi, sashimi to kill parasites.

  • @ zach: to browbeat some more, noting absence of “??!!11″ following it, I think it was more of a “but here goes anyway” type of “what the hell.”

  • I don’t think he sounds mad either – a little frustrated but tried to end on a good note with “cheers” I thought.

  • i think zach is a little sensitive today. he must have his period.

  • Unless you’re catching the tuna off the coast of brooklyn, it has to be frozen before it makes it into the sushi, otherwise it would be really gross.

  • ha ha, I think Luke may be a Brit. What Ham Shank says “whilst”, and “cheers”? Seems like they toss a shitload of food w/ that hour by concept..

  • internets are serious business.

  • I’ve given good comments to Yushi on your previous posts… enjoyed their food enough to get a number of my co-workers to become regulars. So no more discussion about that… let’s talk about more important matters, like how all of the cashier-girls are damn cute… yet none I’ve seen are japanese??? hmmm. But again they’re all damn cute…. attractive girls, good eats… maybe it’s time for a trip to Rick’s ;> (as if i haven’t been ;P )

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