Mamaroneck's Satsuma-Ya: A Tribute
Maryanne Fichtel March 2005, Larchmont Gazette
Since 1989, Makio Idesako (“Mike” to his regular customers), has been welcoming local residents to Satsuma-Ya, the Japanese restaurant he owned with his wife Taeko. The most celebrated part of his repertoire was the sushi and sashimi—fresh, superior, meticulously prepared.
The traditional Japanese menu, however, bore creative touches that artfully blended Eastern cuisine with Western classics. The endive and blue cheese salad was a favorite of many, and most hot dishes came with a serving of mashed potatoes. After sixteen years, Satsuma-Ya is closing down, and the area is losing an establishment that offered consistently delicious cuisine and a true family experience.
A hidden gem in High Falls serves up the real deal
Laura Facchin February 2009, Hudson Valley Magazine
It was 2005 and Makio Idesako had just closed up his Japanese restaurant in Mamaroneck after a very successful 16-year run. Satsuma-Ya had quickly become a popular neighborhood joint where regulars (who called Idesako “Mike”) raved about the freshest fish in town, creative culinary plates, and the welcoming reception from the bubbly Idesako and his family.
A more adventurous favorite is the Omekase, or “chef’s choice,” dinner. Idesako chooses a full five- or six-course dinner, served only at the sushi bar. “I will select the freshest choices and best combinations for these dinners,” he says. “It’s always nice to surprise people and let them try new things.” Easing into new territory is something that the chef wants to help the locals to do..
Japanese Cuisine With Western Touches
M.H Reed April 1992, New York Times
It is always a pleasure to return to a restarant three years after its opening to find the place humming and the food as good as ever. We are happy to report such is the case at Satsuma-ya. This new-wave Japanese restaurant has endared itsself to the community by serving not only traditional Japanese food but also delightful hybrids employing familiar Western ingredients like mashed potatoes, olive oil and cheese. Surprisingly, it all works beautifully.
The Twain Meet in Mamaroneck
M.H Reed August 1989, New York Times
Manhattan has several restaurants, but Satsuma-ya (Satsuma is the name of an old province in Japan) is the county's first, and the seemingly unusual venture is meeting with success.
Expect to find items such as endive, argula and raddichio salad, pasta of the day Italian-style and chicken roll with mashed potatoes listed among familiar yakitori, tempura and teri dishes.
Tasting Notes - Bull & Buddha, Poughkeepsie
Joe Stienger October 2010, North Country Rambler
The most attractive selections on the Bull and Buddha's menu are the sushi offerings. The dishes are prepared by the most capable hands of Makio Idesako, who prior to coming to Poughkeepsie ran the Amici Sushi kitchen for John Novi at the Depuy Canal House in High Falls.
Trust me these are capable hands. We were treated, over two hours, to ten scrumptious courses at the sushi bar. The sushi offerings included crispy (unagi) fresh water eel, and a separate larger platter of salt water eel. Makio brought sampler platters of sushi (with rice) and sashimi (sans rice), which included salmon, tuna and yellow tail. We also enjoyed a crunchy roll of shrimp tempura and avocado, a whole soft shell crab, Zuwai Gani (snow crab), slices of octopus, fluke, tuna belly (toro), and broiled yellow tail cheeks.
New restaurant buzz: Sushi Makio in Kingston serves Omakase style Japanese dinner, sushi & tempura rolls!
Vanessa Ahern, January 2014, Hudson Valley Goodstuff
My husband Tom and I ended up going to Sushi Makio on our anniversary, which fell on a Tuesday this year. We braved the Polar Vortex temps, and arrived at SushiMakio at 6pm. Chef Makio greeted us from behind the sushi bar, prepared to cook an Omakase style dinner for us. I have never had an Omakase dinner. This was a 10-course dinner, but it can have even more courses. Each plate is impeccably presented. Though Makio makes it look easy, there is a method to it. The dishes, all selected by Chef Makio, were proportioned perfectly. I’m an adventurous diner so I enjoyed not knowing what was coming next.
North Country Rambler: SushiMakio, an Omakase experience!
Joe Stienger, January 2014, North Country Rambler
The best way to experience the chef's talents is to ask for Makio's "Omakase", or chef's choice. Last night we were offered ten individual dishes. For $75 per person, you will be treated to a parade of beautifully designed dishes that incorporate many of the Japanese artistic disciplines like flower arranging, origami and painting - combining not only flavors, but textures and colors that must be savored visually first, and only then, tasted.
Kingston After Dark: Real Craft
Kingston Times, January 2014
If you think you have had good sushi before, you haven’t tried the real deal yet until you visit the new Sushi Makio restaurant at 1088 Morton Blvd.Authentic Japanese sushi is a much more graceful and exacting craft. Idesako is simply brilliant at what he does and SushiMakio offers Kingston residents a real chance to enjoy affordable yet masterfully made authentic Japanese dishes.
From octopus appetizers to his new “Old Capital Roll” (consisting of spicy tuna, spicy salmon, cucumber and spicy mayo), there are many options to choose from. When I visited SushiMakio it was a treat to get fresh, high quality Toro this time of year! I also have to recommend the gorgeous spicy tuna tower. The presentation of every dish is like a work of art, as sushi should be.
The interior of Sushi Makio is comfortable and clean, a nice environment for a memorable dining experience. The servers are knowledgeable and you may get to even meet Makio’s very nice wife Taeako.
Sushi Makio in Kingston serves Omakse dinner & superb sushi
Chronogram Magazine, January 2014
SushiMakio has been open since December 3rd. The chef owner Makio Idesako, is a sushi master chef who has been creating delicious sushi for 40 years so I knew I was going to taste something very unique. (Hudson Valley sushi lovers may know him from his previous work at the Amici Sushi Kitchen at Depuy Canal in High Falls and Bull and Buddha in Poughkeepsie.
We ate at a slow and steady pace, watching Chef Makio behind the sushi bar, busy with his hands, but we couldn’t tell what was next. (Depending on the night, small parties can eat at the sushi bar for an Omakase dinner (price starts at $50 per person). We chose a table as it was a Tuesday night, and we had the small restaurant to ourselves while we were there.
The Omakase dinner must be reserved in advance. Though I didn’t order from the menu there are a zillion tempting options, and next time I go I’d love to try any of the Sushi Makio Must Haves: dragon roll, million dollar roll, out of control roll, lobster fiesta roll, and rich and famous roll. Gunham maki selections, sushi and sashimi, and kitchen entrees such as tuna, salmon, and shrimp teriyaki sauce, and two noodle dishes. I would definitely recommend Sushi Makio if you love sushi and other Japanese specialties. They also have a selection of Japanese wines, sake, and beer. Chef Makio can tailor the Omakase dinner to suit individual tastes as well. We told Chef Makio and his wife Taeko that it was our 13th wedding anniversary, and they told us they’ve been married for 40 years.
Sushi Makio: The Lastest Endevor for High Falls Chef
Daily Freeman, March 2014
Authenticity and quality trump speed and price are the latest additions to the local sushi scene thanks to Sushi Makio, next to the TCBY on Morton Boulevard in the Town of Ulster.Sushi Makio is just the latest in a line of restaurants owned by Idesako Makio, 64, a High Falls resident who came to the United States from Japan in 1972.
He said he skips dishes typically offered at Japanese restaurants to focus solely on sushi.He said he focuses on quality. Real sushi is definitely not fast food like the variety offered at takeout places or supermarkets, he said.
The most popular dish is Omakase, which consists of a multi-course tasting menu from the chef, he said. It requires a reservation, and starts at $55 and goes right up to $100 per person, he said.
He said Omakase specialties include ankimo made up with monkfish liver pate with black caviar, spider roll made with soft shell crab and tempura roll, sushi assortment, cucumbers with sweet vinegar, baygai snail, sashimi assortment and miso soup.He said he will always go the extra mile to meet customer requests, even if that means seeking out supplies at the largest fish market in Tokyo, the Tsukiji Market, or using seaweed in lieu of fish for vegetarians.
Dining Out: SushiMakio, Love at First Bite.
Hudson Valley Parent Magazine March 2014
Tucked away in a run-of-the-mill business plaza in Kingston hides my new favorite sushi restaurant. Since first opening its doors in December, Sushi Makio has been getting some pretty rave reviews.
We chose two more off the “Makio Must Haves” section (when a master sushi chef says it’s a “must have,” you listen!). The Deadliest Catch roll (snow crab, avocado, cucumber, toasted almond flake, wasabi mayo) had such a depth of flavor, and the Graffiti roll (shrimp, tuna, yellow tail, salmon, fluke, crab, avocado, cucumber, tobiko) was equally as satisfying. Every piece of sushi was perfectly balanced.
Every dish we ordered was a piece of art. This place is the real deal. We bowed to Chef Makio as we left and thanked him for the most perfect meal.
Quick trip: Drinks and dinner in Kingston
Albany Times Union March 2014
At the recommendation of the chef Ric Orlando of New World Bistro Bar in Albany and New World Home Cooking in Saugerties, I went Kingston on Wednesday night to check out Sushi Makio. The unassuming restaurant has been open since December 2013 in a dreary strip mall on the industrial side of town near the former IBM complex.
The sushi restaurant’s 66-year-old owner, Makio Idesako, a native of Japan, spent 20 years in New York City kitchens, and moved a little north, to Westchester, for 16 more years before retiring three years ago. Not working didn’t suit him, and he continued his progress upstate, landing 15 months ago on the wrong side of Kingston but, apparently, the right place for a chef who wants a small, quiet place to finish his career.
So here's the thing about Sushi Makio....you can take the chef out of New York City, but you can't take the New York City sizzle out of the chef.
The Sushi Legend July 2015
Sushi Makio is owned and operated by Chef Makio Idesako, a man who is as charming as he is experienced.
You won't have interaction with Chef unless you sit at the sushi bar, so if you're a small group, I certainly advise that you do. When you've chosen Omakase like me and Mrs. Sushi Legend did, the interactions with the chef are part of the show. So when Chef Makio took out a block of Tuna Belly (Toro) just so I could take a picture, I knew we had chosen a winner.