In 1974, an article in The New York Times calculated that there were 100 Japanese restaurants in the city, a number that had exploded from just 10 in 1964. (With a gusto once reserved for chow mein and egg foo young, New Yorkers are now dipping their chopsticks into another Oriental taste treatJapanese cuisine, chirped the article.) By the time the 80s rolled around, it had become a certifiable craze. Now, of course, you can get a sushi fix for $450 a pop at Masa, or pick it up pre-made at the supermarket for a few bucks. Sushi is stilland always will be for those of us without trust fundsa treat to be carefully balanced between value and quality. For our money, the best sushi in the city is at Taro, a bare-bones joint where you can sit at the sushi bar and have a beautifully fresh, skillfully executed omakase meal for $40.