Zuma is a high-end izakaya in Back Bay that seems to be filled with people who’ve flown first class to Tokyo so many times that they can compare it to Japanese izakayas that are actually in Japan, which is to say that it’s trendy and expensive (it is in the Four Seasons, after all). But the expensive stuff that comes off the robata grill or sushi counter is truly excellent. The prawn and black cod dumplings are outstanding, the rib eye is perfectly cooked, and the sushi, though not as creative as the stuff you’ll find at the best places in town, is made with excellent fish. Come here the next time you need to impress someone who only travels via rideshares on principle and it’ll get the job done.
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Ittoku is a Porter Square izakaya inside a windowless mall, and it’s better and way more fun than you expect a restaurant in a windowless mall to be.
Oishii in the South End is a great omakase spot that’s perfect for when you can’t get into O Ya.
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Uni is a flashy Japanese izakaya in Back Bay with a $16 spoon, hot rock wagyu beef, and lots of small plates you won’t want to stop ordering.
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