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211 E. 43rd St., nr. Third Ave. (Midtown East)
New York, NY
(1) 212-953-7253 | www.sakagura.com
HOURSMon.-Thurs.: 11:30am-2:20pm, 6:00pm-11:45pm; Fri.: 11:30am-2:20pm, 6:00pm-12:45am; Sat.: 6:00pm-12:45am; Sun.: 6:00pm-10:45pm; Jan. 1st, 2nd, 3rd and National Holidays: Closed for lunch
BEST FORLunch; dinner; late night
PRICE (DINNER PLATE; LUNCH SOBA SET MENU; LUNCH TASTING COURSE))USD 5-16; USD 11.50; USD 30
FAMOUS PLATESFluke carpaccio; saikoro steak; buta kakuni; black sesame cream brulee
DRINKS AND WINEOver 200 well-selected sakes; beer
# OF SEATS86
PRIVATE ROOM AVAILABLE?Yes
METROGrand Central-42nd St. (4, 5, 6, 7, S)
This speakeasy sake bar is a favorite of the Manhattan set who get a thrill from navigating their way through a commercial office building and down an unassuming set of stairs to a hidden basement entrance. If you manage to find the place, you’ll arrive in a serene subterranean lounge with all the Japanese touches you’d expect: jazz on the stereo, glowing paper lanterns, and potted bamboo. The reason for all the hustle getting in isn’t the chill space, though, it’s the most impressive sake menu. True to izakaya form, the tasty food offerings are more sake pairings than actual meals (again, it’s all about the sake), making this the perfect spot to throw back a few after work.
Midtown suits, sake snobs, Japanese expats, and highly loyal regulars.
WHAT WE WOULD WEAR
Much of the crowd comes straight from work, so a suit would work. Otherwise, go casual with a sweater, skinny jeans, and knee high boots.
GO HERE WITH
Friends; colleagues; family; significant other
WHY WE LIKE IT
There can really be no better selection of sake in the city than the 200 varieties offered here. Chances are if you’ve heard of it, they stock it (along with ten other variations you didn’t know you loved). The wait staff is also quite good at recommending if you are new to the sake world.
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
Cell phone reception is non-existent with some carriers, which can be a problem when dining with first-timers who are having a hard time finding the restaurant.
GOOD TO KNOW
Lunch and dinner are both served here, but both focus mainly on smaller plates which are meant to be paired with sake. The izakaya concept is similar to tapas, so you’ll have to order numerous dishes if you want a substantial meal.
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