Matsuri – 30 years
by Abdon FLORES
In Japanese the word matsuri means festival, it implies a convivial gathering among friends to celebrate either in the streets or around a table. The idea of this joy is behind Matsuri sushi restaurants. Thirty years ago, in 1986, the first restaurant Matsuri was founded in rue Richelieu, heart of the Japanese neighborhood in Paris. The site had a major attraction: a sushi conveyor belt, the first one in Europe. It was the start of a happy adventure that has seen how this business evolved into a chain of restaurants spread not only in Paris but in France.
The conveyor belt system makes the difference since it is itself a sort of attraction, a plus that gives you the possibility to choose with your eyes. Moreover, you can be placed rather close to the sushi masters and see how your food is being prepared. Add to this a Japanese interior design made on wood and Japanese waiters to have the full experience of a kaiten-zushi really far, far away from Japan. Another plus is that from this year there will be two “collections” of new dishes proposed by chef Dai Tamura. The fall/winter collection, for instance, includes 7 new bentos and 3 California Deluxe rolls that will be available from September 21st.
Nowadays the Matsuri chain has nine spots in the Parisian region and five more in France. The conveyor belt idea has paid well, but it’s not the only reason. According to Eric Woog, Matsuri President, “Democratization is the key word. I take the changes of gastronomical preferences in France with enthusiasm.” Also, the food quality has a major role in the success of any food business. Fresh products and an assorted choice are key factors that keep clients coming too. Even if sushi seems to be an easy dish to prepare, it has to be well done. Nothing is so difficult to render perfect as simple things.
The Matsuri Boëtie is the smallest and newest of the family. It must be said that this site is a great solution to eat in the busy area of the 8th district. It can accommodate up to 35 people around the conveyor belt. Due to its dimensions, only cold dishes are served. Maki, sushi, salads, california rolls, sashimi, and succulents deserts like the yuzu cheesecake or litchis in syrup are among the delicacies you can pick up on the incredible silent conveyor belt. Children are very welcomed since special sticks are proposed to them; there is also the possibility to purchase special stick editions for your own. Like in all the Matsuri establishments, you can order to take or to deliver.
More info: www.matsuri.fr
Open from Monday through Saturday, 12h-15h and 19h-23h.