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We Tried The $50 Omakase Berries Crowned The “Tesla of Strawberries” and Here’s Everything you Need to Know

If you’re a self-proclaimed fruit lover, by now you’ve probably heard of Oishii Omakase Berries and rightfully wondered if these $50 Japanese strawberries are worth the hype and hefty price tag. While foodies everywhere can appreciate quality, perfectly ripe fruit that is often hard to find on supermarket shelves, it still begs the question, what really sets these strawberries apart? Are the Oishii Omakase Berries deemed the “Tesla of Strawberries” really worth the hype?

Read on for everything you need to know about these unique Japanese strawberries and whether the experience is worth the expense.

What is an Omakase Berry?

The Omakase Berry is a unique Japanese variety characterized by its delightful aroma, exceptional sweetness, and seedless appearance (although these berries do have tiny seeds). The Omakase Berry is considered to be a deep, sensory fruit experience long prized in Japanese food culture. 

Where do Omakase Berries typically grow? 

Omakase Berries typically grow in the foothills of the Japanese Alps. For a short period of the year, the conditions are perfect for strawberry crops to thrive, producing juicy and flavorful fruit considered to be an indulgence throughout Japanese culture. 

How did Oishii Omakase Berries make their way to the US?

Oishii founder and CEO Hiroki Koga grew up in Japan where delicious, thoughtfully farmed fruit was commonplace. When visiting the United States, Koga found that farming practices tended to value quantity over quality, inspiring him to share Japan’s rich culture of high-end fruits with the world. After his discovery, he brought the Omakase Berry seeds from Japan to New York to establish a first-of-its-kind indoor vertical strawberry farm in America. 

How are Oishii Omakase Berries grown in the US?

While the seeds are native to Japan, Oishii’s first indoor vertical farm is based in New Jersey with a second vertical farm that recently opened in Los Angeles. Indoor vertical farming grants Oishii the freedom to grow fresh fruit any time of year, eliminating the need for all pesticides. The brand’s farming practices focus on bringing technology and nature into harmony by replicating the elements of a perfect day in Japan. The farm employs rigorous farming practices to ensure plants are healthy and that they are grown in the perfect environment for optimal quality and sweetness.

The Experience:

Before we dive into what the Omakase Berries taste like, let’s take a step back and acknowledge the effort that’s gone into making Oishii Omakase Berries a unique experience overall. To break it down for you, we evaluated our experience through the lens of each of the five senses. In this tasting, we each selected an Omakase Berry once the strawberries reached room temperature as it is recommended to let the berries rest at room temp for 10–15 minutes prior to enjoying.

The 5 Senses Breakdown: 

Sight: The Oishii Omakase Berries come in a clear container with a white sleeve made of quality paper one would find on a high-end business card (Patrick Bateman would approve). Each of the 11 perfectly-hued strawberries sits nestled on its own pillow as if on display in a jewelry case, each patiently waiting to be selected by a discerning palate.

All of the strawberries were the same shade of red (most likely due to optimal ripeness) and pretty consistent in size which is uncommon for everyday strawberries. The strawberries had a seedless appearance due to the very tiny seeds that are deeply embedded and almost microscopic until you look closely. These are indeed designer strawberries.

Smell: The Omakase Berry has a bright and immersive sweet aroma.  

Touch: The skin is smoother than your average Strawberry and is also firm to the touch. Once you sink your teeth into the berry, the sensation becomes a tender, almost creamy experience. 

Taste: When taking our first bite, we agreed that there was an intense yet delicate sweetness at play. While the sweetness added a sense of decadence, it wasn’t overwhelming, much like a well-balanced cocktail. 

Sound: There’s a light crunch to these berries that adds to the satisfaction of the overall experience.

The Verdict: While there is a unique sweetness to these Japanese strawberries, what stood out most was the consistency in quality. The premium quality in ripeness, taste, and texture was extremely consistent across all 11 strawberries. Are these better than your average strawberry? Yes. Are they worth the steep price? That depends. 

Are Oishii Omakase Berries worth the hype? 

If you are a foodie who simply loves to try new and unique foods, these Oishii Omakase Berries are worth trying. You will find they are superior in taste, aroma, and texture to the average strawberry. Will they be a life-changing experience? No. Are they worth writing home about? Well, we did. 

However, if the thought of spending $50 on 11 high-quality strawberries seems outrageous to you, the experience will most likely not be worth the investment. Save your dollars for another indulgence. 

Where can you buy Oishii Omakase Berries? 

You can purchase 11 medium or 8 large Oishii Omakase Berries locally if you live in New York, New Jersey, or Los Angeles. To buy them online, you can sign up for their waiting list.