The Best Sushi Restaurants In Boston

Sure, the lobster rolls and raw bars are great, but Boston’s sushi deserves some love, too.

If you’ve spent any time in Boston and New England, you’ve probably gone clamming, eaten oysters from the shell, and sampled your fair share of lobster rolls. We’re proud of seafood around here, especially the raw stuff, which is why there are so many places in town to go ham on sashimi, nigiri, and omakase menus.

Here are the best sushi spots for all different kinds of situations. You’ll find 10-course omakases where tiny slices of fish are enveloped in smoke, plenty of places to get a la carte hand rolls with crispy nori, and restaurants where the toro comes out topped with caviar while a DJ spins some chill house music.


photo credit: Natalie Schaefer


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The 20-course omakase at O Ya will run you $295 per person before tax, tip, and drinks, and you’ll need to pay in advance. Is it worth it? Yes. Everything you’ll eat is stunningly good, like the super thin wild ika that’s crisped up with a torch and topped with cherry blossoms and fresh lime juice. If you have the cash to go regularly, by all means, please do, and enjoy your box at Fenway (please invite us sometime). But if you’re not balling quite that hard, head here to celebrate something big, like getting a promotion and no longer having to deal with that boss you hate.

Uni, located in The Eliot Hotel, is one of Boston’s flashiest restaurants—there are murals on the walls that could be pulled straight from the ICA and lots of moody lighting. Try one of their Japanese cocktails with ingredients like gin, makrut, cilantro, and lillet, while you debate between ordering barracuda sashimi with persimmon and serranos or kabayaki unagi with fig. Go wild and add on a $26 spoonful of uni, quail egg, yuzu, and caviar. Everything is incredible, and yes, that spoon is worth it.

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Oishii is the perfect spot if you want a high-end omakase that’s a little extra. The vibes here are dark, sexy, and moody, and they do a great six-course option for $225. That might seem shockingly high for way fewer bites than you’d get at other spots around town, but the courses here are bigger and feature more cooked stuff, like crispy rice with spicy tuna, various tempura dishes, and poached lobster. The menu changes often, but we’ve eaten some incredible king crab maki and a plate of crispy scallops with shiso and wagyu.

Yes, Google might list this Mission Hill restaurant as a Thai spot, but Laughing Monk actually has one of the best omakase deals in town. You’ll get 10 courses for about $150, with bites like black tiger shrimp, branzino nigiri, and salmon nigiri presented in a tiny covered dish that’s been pumped with smoke. You’ll need to make a pre-paid reservation at least one day in advance, since they don’t take walk-ins for the omakase.

This is our favorite place for a chill but fun omakase in North Cambridge. They do an 18-course option for $168 during the week and $178 on the weekend, and it’s filling enough that you won’t leave wanting to get a slice of pizza afterward. The sake pairings go well with everything you’ll eat, like otoro infused with bacon fat and sashimi topped with garlic chips.

Along with a hardware store that sells plungers at 1am, everyone should have a reliable sushi restaurant in their neighborhood. That’s exactly what Ebi is in Sommerville. It’s very good, very casual, and cheap enough that you could pop in once a week without having to eat trail mix for dinner for the next month. Sit at the bar for a miso salmon and blue dragon roll, or order 10 courses of nigiri for just $54, or five for $26. You won’t get caviar, otoro, or detailed descriptions of each course like you will at O Ya and Umami, but the fish is excellent and comes topped with things like smoked lemon and honey.

Yes, Zuma, is at the Four Seasons, but unlike a lot of other upscale spots on this list, here you have the option to order a la carte or do a full omakase. Save the tasting menu for other spots, though—a la carte is the way to go. You really want to be here on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday night when there’s a DJ and order a bunch of plates to share like sliced sashimi with yuzu and yellowtail with green chili relish and pickled garlic. The cocktails, like the orange milk blossom punch, are also delicious, and better than what you can find at other sushi spots in town.

Matsunori focuses on temaki-style sushi, and first-timers here should get the savory sweet miso-cod. Torched and caramelized, the fish tastes almost like honey, and comes served over just a pinch of rice that’s all tucked into a crisp piece of nori. They also have great options like spicy tuna with a bit of crunch from fried sweet potato and A5 wagyu rolls with beef straight from the owner’s farm. They get busy around 7pm on the weekend and don’t take reservations, but you can usually walk in and grab a spot at the bar.

The neon behind the bar at Douzo might be more ‘80s than kitschy, but the food far makes up for the dated decor. Post up at the long sushi counter for a solo meal, and start with some wagyu beef and miso eggplant skewers. For a casual lunch or dinner with a friend, the $108 tasting is a surprisingly good deal with 29 pieces, including a special roll. We’ve never been disappointed in the sweet miso yellowtail roll—we’re always here for the mango and crab combo—or the Mt. Fuji with crunchy lobster katsu and savory eel sauce.

Blue Ribbon Sushi has been around since 1995 in NYC, and we’re thrilled it’s landed in Boston. The new location is a big, minimalist wood-covered room with a long sushi bar that you’ll want a seat at for a cozy date. You’ll see nigiri you don’t always find in the city, like Japanese red snapper and amberjack, along with an excellent, splurgy roll made with a half lobster, caviar, and shiso that’s always worth ordering.

Cafe Sushi Shoten is a top takeout and delivery option in Cambridge that does cute little set boxes of nigiri, maki, and chicken teriyaki, complete with a cat sticker. But they also have a few window seats where you can hang out with a bottle of sake and some creative nigiri, like salmon with poblano miso and yellowtail kingfish with basil, balsamic, and tomato. You’re definitely going to want to order the amigo maki, too, which is packed with spicy crab, marinated eggplant, and oshinko and topped with seared salmon, avocado, and ponzu. On your way out, grab something from their small section of Japanese snacks, a bottle of fancy sesame oil, and a jar of housemade furikake. 

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