NYC Trip Report, May 2018

New York, I visited your great city for a week.

We went to (my favorite meals in bold): Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare, Sushi Noz, Le Coucou, The Grill, Noda, Sushi Amane, Sushi Ginza Onodera, Okuda, Tempura Matsui, En Japanese Brasserie, Per Se, Cosme, Balthazar, & Harry & Ida’s. Though we enjoyed them all, with Cosme being the only disappointment and Tempura Matsui (lunch) was ok. Drinks were great - the highlights being Karuizawa 12, Ichiro’s Malt The Single Cask, 1964 Chateau de Leberon Armagnac, 2007 Billecart Salmon Extra Brut bdb, and 2011 Boillot Meursault Genevrieres.

Thoughts and full reports to come; just a photo dump (which I’ll clean up later and organize into separate threads) and a quick list for now.

My top 20 best bites of the trip (in chronological order):

  1. Fried softshell crab w/ dill (Le Coucou)
  2. Quenelle de brochet “route de Reims” w/ champagne beurre blanc & caviar (Le Coucou)
  3. Pasta a la Presse (The Grill)
  4. Honey mustard duckling (The Grill)
  5. Akamizuke (Noz)
  6. Saba bozushi (Okuda)
  7. Lobster sashimi w/ kimijoyu and caviar (Okuda)
  8. Grilled nodoguro (Sushi Amane)
  9. Anago (Sushi Amane)
  10. Abalone with its juices and yuzu (Sushi Ginza Onodera)
  11. Aji (Sushi Ginza Onodera)
  12. Uni with toasted brioche and preserved truffle (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  13. Langoustine with kinome (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  14. Diver scallop with sunchoke beurre blanc and Kaluga caviar (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  15. Abalone with leeks foam and Gunma rice with liver sauce (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  16. Seabass with white asparagus, morels, peas, and nasturtium buds (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  17. Kagusodai with porcinis and smoked eggplant sauce (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  18. Shiso sorbet (Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare)
  19. Ankimo (Noda)
  20. Toro, uni, and kegani handroll (Noda)

Le Coucou (superb)

Tempura Matsui

THE GRILL (fantastic)


Cosme (the only disappointing meal)

Sushi Noz (great!)


Per Se

Okuda (great!)


Sushi Amane (great)


Sushi Ginza Onodera (great!)


Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare (sublime)


Harry & Ida’s Meat & Supply Co (“The Pops” pastrami sandwich, pretty good after a Central Park run)

Torst for a couple of afternoon beers

Noda (great!)



Uhmmmm u ate a lot of sooooosh…! Quick post reviews, inspired by your pics trying to decide between noda and noz for next week.

Did you eat anything during your trip?

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(thanks for sharing)


Wow! I really want some honmaguro akami now.

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Fantastic reports and photos!

The purple sake bottle from Okuda: Kirinzan (Niigata Prefecture) Junmai Ginjo, versatile cold, room temperature, and hot.

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Thanks! I actually had a couple of sakes at Okuda, including Shichida. This Kirinzan was recommended for miso-marinated a5 wagyu sirloin with fried burdock.

At Noda, I had a bottle of Shichi Hon Yari shizuku junmai daiginjo. I forgot exactly which ones I had at Noz, Amane, and Sushi Ginza Onodera, but I recall “Stella” muroka genshu and some Dassais as well.

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Stella is the new darling (I’ve yet to try but heard great things about it), Junmai Daiginjo and yes Muroka Genshu which is an interesting combintation for a well polished beast.

Haven’t had the Shichi Hon Yari Shizuku Junmai Daiginjo either but it comes in a 500 mL and I believe has a wooden cork (though it seems not as structurally sound, I worry about transporting it).

Looking back at my pictures, one of the sakes at Amane was Stella. I got it right when we got kegani crabs, which was a nice pairing. However, I didn’t like the small metal ochokos at Amane - Noda’s kiriko glasses were much nicer.

Stella was a bit fruitier than Shichi Hon Yari Shizuku. For pairing with nigiri, I preferred the Shichi Hon Yari. Interestingly, it’s made from Tamazakae rice but the shizuku process and cold fermentation results in a real clean finish. It has a pretty bottle; too bad I didn’t take it home but I was already 3 cocktails in, a bottle of sake, and polishing off some Karuizawa…I don’t remember much of Bemelman’s bar afterwards, but thankfully no hangovers the entire trip. I credit chugging a ton of water, and the alcohol being of high quality!

I think the Shichi Hon Yari Shizuku was my favorite sake the entire trip (sorry, I don’t remember details on all the others). Anyway, I think you would really enjoy what New York has to offer - in my opinion, the best sushi is there (outside of Sushi Sho in Honolulu, which is unique), Chef’s Table is on a real shortlist for best fine dining, and Le Coucou and the Grill are tons of fun with fantastic food.

Unfortunately, I did not explore as much Chinese and Italian as I wanted to, but I’d like to return ASAP!