The Japanese word MUSU translates as ‘infinite possibilities’ and while Chef Patron Michael Shaw’s quartet of menus may not be infinite they are certainly unique for Manchester at least. With a combination of Japanese and more locally-sourced ingredients, the guest is invited to choose the way they prefer to dine at MUSU.
Sentaku (meaning ‘to choose’) allows diners to choose dishes from each section of the menu to suit their own taste preferences, Kaiseki is a set menu curated by Michael and Omakase, a theatrical sushi experience presided over by Head Sushi Chef, Andre Aguiar – currently the only true one of its kind outside of London. Additionally, for time-pressed lunchtime clientele, the Subayai (meaning ‘quick’) is a convenient option for the lunch crowd.
Expect tuna tartare, sashimi of salmon, hamachi and akami and the trendy set egg dish of chawanmushi on the menu. Other stand-out ingredients could be black cod, red prawns and black truffle. Choose from 13 different kinds of traditional Tokyo nigiri – everything from shiitake to scallop or splash out on MUSU-style boasting A5 Japanese wagyu beef, o-toro tuna belly and the very exclusive N25 Schrenckii caviar (it’s thought to be a caviar connoisseur’s dream with a nutty, buttery flavour).
Other sections of the menu include tempura lobster, yakitori duck meatballs and teppan-style monkfish.
The vegetarian offering is extensive with vegetable gyoza, king oyster mushrooms with artichoke and pistachios and tofu served with charred young veggies all bringing their A-game to the splendid spread.
Finish with sweet sticky rice or sudachi (a Japanese citrus fruit) complemented with blackberry and basil. Try pear served with Japanese whiskey or test your tastebuds with a pineapple, Sancho pepper and black truffle dish.
Stay late at MUSU to unlock the Nijikai afterparty menu which includes the famous katsu sando – a Japanese sandwich made with toasted milk bread, tonkatsu sauce and shredded cabbage. The ultimate late-night snack.
Alongside the classics, signature cocktails are separated in to Hajimeru (‘to begin’) and Ajiwau (‘to savour’). The former includes flavours like vanilla, coffee and cacao, grape, oakmoss and apricot and apple and chamomile served with Champagne. Meanwhile, savour the flavours of duck washed suntory chita whisky with cassia, vermouth and berries or wasabi and watermelon infused tequila.