Answers from Our Experts (1)
Masa, a renowned Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star restaurant from Masa Tamayaka, follows two traditional Japanese design principles: shibui and umami. Shibui means simplicity — it rids spaces of unnecessary elements and embraces the honest presentation of materials. You can definitely see this design element at play in Masa. The New York sushi restaurant's minimalist table settings and sparse decorations embody this design philosophy. No music clouds the background, and the only adornment you’ll really see is an oversized clay pot filled with cherry blossom branches. Tables are set with chopsticks and napkins, and overhead lights make the pristine hinoki wood sushi bar shine almost white. Think of it as a Zen-filled sushi temple.
The other principle, umami, encourages the basic essence of flavors to stand out. That ideal carries through in every morsel the restaurant serves — dishes are complex and rich, but each ingredient singularly peaks throughout the 26 courses.