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Omakase (お任せ o-makase?) is a Japanese phrase that means "I'll leave it up to you" (from Japanese "to entrust" (任せる makaseru?)).[citation needed]


In American English, the expression is used by patrons at sushi restaurants to leave the selection to the chef. It differs from ordering à la carte.[1] The chef will generally present a series of plates, beginning with the lightest fare and proceeding to the heaviest dishes.[2] The phrase is not exclusive to service of raw fish with rice, and can incorporate grilling, simmering, or other cooking techniques as well.[3]


Customers ordering omakase style expect the chef to be innovative and surprising in the selection of dishes, and the meal can be likened to an artistic performance by the chef.[4] Ordering omakase can be a gamble, but the customer typically receives the highest-quality fish available at a lower cost than if it had been ordered à la carte.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Corson, Trevor (2007). The Zen of Fish. New York: HarperCollins. pp. 318–319. ISBN 978-0-06-088350-8. 
  2. ^ Corson, p. 77.
  3. ^ Corson, pp. 98, 113.
  4. ^ Corson, pp. 102, 288.
  5. ^ Issenberg, Sasha (2007). The Sushi Economy: Globalization and the Making of a Modern Delicacy. New York: Gotham Books. p. 121. ISBN 978-1-59240-294-6.