Case Study

Umi at UC San Diego

Sushi Restaurant

…a sushi bar that utilized AUTEC machines to produce high quality sushi for the students of UCSD on the north side of campus.

Ivan helped open 64 Degrees—a food half at the University of California San Diego about 9 years ago. Though catered towards students, this food hall was constructed with high quality food in mind, making all the food from scratch in-kitchen and selling nothing that is frozen. The sushi platform at 64 Degrees, named Umi, was constructed as a result of popular demand for sushi on campus surveys. Chef Ivan, having worked with Sushi Robots before, with the help of a past president of the Japanese Student Association on campus, conceptualized a sushi bar that utilized AUTEC machines to produce high quality sushi for the students of UCSD on the north side of campus. The AUTEC team was able to interview Chef Ivan a couple days after Umi had a successful launch on October 23rd, 2023, with impressive sales numbers in it’s first two days.

Robot Impact Metrics

Sushi output rate

Sushi Per Hour

Operation cost

0 %
labor to cost operation

Sushi Operation Challenges

Rice sheets are difficult to get even without crushing the grains

AUTEC Sushi Robots are designed with special rollers and fine-tuned motors that don’t smash the grains of rice when forming them into different shapes.

Sushi Robot Impact

Needed to produce at a faster rate

While a sushi chef can create a rice sheet in about ten seconds, a chef using an AUTEC Sushi Machines are able to form rice sheets in under 3 seconds each.

Sushi Robot Impact

Consistency between different locations on campus

AUTEC Sushi Machines are highly consistent using their fine-tuned motors and customization settings.

Sushi Robot Impact

Business Details


Size of restaurant

1 Sushi Bar within a large food hall


Covers per day

369 Covers (2nd Day open, Lunch only)


3Robots in use

2 Maki Maker ASM865A, Discontinued AUTEC Rice Mixer

How many sushi staff per shift

6-7 Chefs, 2-3 per Sushi Station


How many rolls or sushi served per day

597 sushi pieces at 80.8 sushi pieces per hour (2nd Day open, Lunch only)

Restaurant Operation with Sushi Robots


Overall Restaurant Operation

Overall Restaurant Operation

What kind of sushi is offered?

Sushi rolls, nigiri and handrolls. Umi makes everything fresh, with sauces made in-house and fresh fish cut the morning of.

How many different sushi rolls are on the menu?

6 Rolls, 6 Nigiri, 1 Handroll

What services are offered: Dine-in, take-out, etc?

Dine-in, take-out, ordering through their school’s mobile app


Acceptance of Sushi Robot

Acceptance of Sushi Robot

What was your kitchen’s initial thoughts about using a Sushi Robot?

Because they have used the robot previously at other locations on campus or at other kitchens, the chefs were all accepting of the Sushi Robots.

What made them accept Sushi Robots into your operation?

The chefs came to appreciate the robots because of their consistency and reliability to produce large quantities quickly.

What were customer’s impression of your use of a Sushi Robot?

The students seem generally interested and accepting of newer kitchen technology such as the Sushi Robots. They also appreciate its sleek design and grey-tone colors that fits well with Umi’s darker aesthetic.


Sushi Operation

Sushi Operation

How sushi rice is made

Sushi rice is cooked in the back kitchen of 64 Degrees and mixed in a AUTEC Sushi rice mixer.

How sushi is made with Sushi Robots

Sushi rice is loaded into one of the two Sushi Robots set up at the counter. Each roll is made to order—when an order comes in, one of the chefs will produce a rice sheet from one of the Sushi Robots, then move it to a neighboring tabletop where they complete it with ingredients. This allows others to also use the same machine to start other orders.

How many people at the sushi station

6-7 sushi chefs, 2-3 chefs per sushi station




Umi Roll

Spicy tuna (togarashi & rayu oil), tempura shrimp, Aleppo pepper seared steak torched-to-order with a shishito pepper aioli and tare sauce

Spiked Tuna Roll

Spiked tuna, tempura shrimp, lemon snow crab meat, topped with togarashi seared tuna