Salerno hosts one of the most authentic Japanese kitchens in Italy: the story of Umi, one of the best sushi restaurants

Jun 14 2024, 12:48
Umi is a restaurant with elegant and minimalist decor, inspired by contemporary Japanese inns. It features a large counter where you can watch the talented chef Jun Inazawa at work. Gambero Rosso awarded it the prestigious Three Chopsticks in the Sushi 2025 guide

With twenty-two seats in the dining room and eight at the counter, Umi, a great sushi restaurant in Salerno, offers a pleasant intimacy for its guests. The restaurant, besides earning the Tre Bacchette, the highest recognition in Gambero Rosso’s new Sushi 2025 guide, also received the special award for Best Service.

An authentic Japanese cuisine sign

When Gerardo Ferrari and Fiorenzo Benvenuti – young entrepreneurs already known in the city for ventures like the reopening of the historic Vicolo della Neve – established this restaurant in 2020, during the pandemic, the potential of hosting authentic Japanese cuisine in Salerno combined with exceptional local ingredients was already evident. Umi features elegant and essential decor, inspired by contemporary Japanese inns. The large counter allows guests to watch the talented chef Jun Inazawa at work. The best way to immerse yourself in the Japanese experience is through the Omakase tasting menu, entrusting the chef with an 8-course journey for €110.

Umi’s offerings

Inazawa’s cuisine is traditional Japanese, primarily hot dishes, crafted with the finest local fish, and for sushi and sashimi, selecting high-quality European products. Among the many interesting menu options, try an intense and elegant dashi broth with snapper, mushrooms, and ginger, transporting you with its fragrances and flavors to the heart of Japan. The grill is very important in this menu: our tastings included a sea bream marinated in mirin and a smoked snapper with kimizu (a Japanese egg-based sauce). The ebi shino tempura, red mullet and prawn roll, is crisp and dry. The sashimi of Scottish salmon, Spanish tuna, and slightly seared local amberjack is of excellent quality. The nigiri and futomaki, brushed by the chef with soy sauce and wasabi, are very delicate and perfectly executed.

An invitation to return

One of the restaurant's strengths, besides the cuisine, is the attention to detail in the dining room, with meticulous, professional, and attentive service. The special award for Best Service in the Sushi 2025 guide goes to a flawless and engaging service, without ever being intrusive. Managing the extensive wine and sake list impeccably is an outstanding professional like Silvana Carrara, who has experience at the Michelin-starred Faro di Capo D’orso in Maiori. Carrara is also a sake sommelier, evident from her expertise and precision in guiding perfectly paired selections.

Umi - via Roma, 17 - Salerno -

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