Let me put it this way: We chose the location of our Warsaw airbnb to be close to Youmiko, the sushi place we had visited once a couple years prior. That’s all you need to know about this fine eatery. Fresh, exciting, upscale sushi in a vibrant neighborhood close to the city center and hands down, one of Europe’s top spots for ambitious plantbased cuisine.
I remembered how blown away I was the last time I was here. And again, it was an experience: The quality of the creations they served here, the artistic approach, the taste and textures, the combinations, the fresh ingredients and the thoughtful composition of their menu selection. Youmiko didn’t disappoint.
“We decided Warsaw was ready for a 100% vegan sushi place”
Founded by Magdalena Juda in 2016, Youmiko Vegan Sushi has developed into one of the plantbased staples of the Polish capital. And it’s a franchise – well, kind of.
“The original Youmiko in Cracow was neither vegan nor vegetarian but regular sushi with fish,” Magdalena tells us. “Pawel, the owner, decided to become vegan one day and he started his experiments”, creating vegan sushi variations. When Magdalena and her husband visited his restaurant, they were very impressed with his creations. But Cracow was not ready: “He used to serve vegan options in his sushi place – and they now organize one vegan day a week,” but Pawel didn’t dare to go all-out. “Together we decided Warsaw would be ready for a 100% vegan version” of the restaurant.
“We always buy local and seasonal ingredients,” Magdalena explains. “We always try to get better and we always compare, try, search… and we are open to new options at all times.” This approach shows in the taste of their creations here … and it makes it hard to really choose a favorite item from the menu.
Magdalena feels the same: “Since the very beginning I eat at Youmiko two times a week and I always have a different go-to. It changes depending on weather, season, my mood etc. I love our miso soup, corn or pumpkin gunkan maki and all different types of uramaki. At the moment, though, I’m crazy about uramaki with tofu paste.” Well who isn’t?!
“Tourists come to Warsaw for ‘vegan holidays’ – there are so many options”
The vegan culinary scene of Warsaw is definitely a force to reckon with in Europe. Who would have thought a country known for his hearty and meaty cuisine would become a leader in plantbased food? “We have lots of tourists visiting Youmiko saying that they organize ‘vegan holidays’ in Warsaw because of the number of places they can eat out at,” Magdalena tells us on our way out. Um yeah, that would be us, then.
It’s true, there’s a lot of great vegan options in Warsaw and we would highly recommend staying for at least a week to indulge and dive into this interesting, wildly underrated European city. But if you only have one night in the Polish capital – Youmiko is where you want to go!
Youmiko Vegan Sushi