I was meeting with some old friends from NY on a Sunday afternoon in Shinjuku, and needing to find a place that can accommodate us and their two small children, without wasting a chowish opportunity, so I chose to go for Kaiten-sushi at Numazukou (沼津港) near Shinjuku station's west entrance (nishi-guchi). In a recent Otonano Shumatsu magazine survey of chain kaiten-sushi restaurants, Numazukou ranked in the top 3 kaiten-sushi chains in Tokyo, and looking at some blog sites, it ranks high there as well. Maguro-bito (まぐろ人) is the only place that consistently ranked higher on all surveys. Anyway, based on the criteria limiting my choices, I thought it was a good choice. While 2pm is prime Sunday brunch hour in New York, I'm not sure what Tokyo-ites are up to at this hour (besides shopping--the department stores were packed), but Numazukou wasn't as jammed as I thought it would be. There was a steady stream of counter seats opening up, but with only 4-5 tables, we only waited for about 15 minutes.
Numazukou is known for having specialty items from Shizuoka prefecture. The two main items that most critics and bloggers mention are the nama shirasu (raw baby anchovies) and the nama sakura ebi (raw baby shrimp) sushi that's famous in Shizuoka. You don't find these items easily even in Tokyo. But these are some of the items avaialable everyday at Numazukou. These two were among the better items I tasted. The shirasu had a fresh and slightly slippery texture, and had a briny quality that you don't get from the boiled or dried stuff. And the sakura-ebi had a similar texture, and a slightly sweeter flavor. I was also pleasantly surprised by many of the standard items coming off the conveyor. The hikari-mono (silver fish) like kohada, ma-aji, nama-saba, shime-saba were all quite good. Also good were the various squid and scallop and other clam sushi. They also had several items on the seasonal specials board. Items like kanburi or shirako, which were also quite good. The specialty items never made it on to the conveyor, so you just had to ask the nearest person for any of these items, so you know they are made fresh.
I was the biggest eater at the table, but as a group, we managed to finish off quite a bit, I thought. My friends wouldn't let me pay, but I did catch that it didn't even come to 10000Y for 4 adults and 2 children (3 & 4 years old). For a good inexpensive kaiten sushi outing, I have no qualms against Numazukou.
Numazukou website menu: http://www.numazukou.com/menu/index.html