NYCReview

photo credit: Byrnne Levy

Nōksu image
7.6

Nōksu

Korean

Koreatown

$$$$Perfect For:Special Occasions

Included In

If you were appalled at the latest subway fare increase, consider Nōksu, a Korean restaurant inside the 32nd Street entrance of the Herald Square station. The 12-course tasting menu here is $225, the beverage pairing is an additional $175, and if you swap the kaluga caviar for ossetra, that’ll be an extra $45. It sounds like a lot of expensive tasting menus, and once you’re sitting with a dozen other people at a marble counter, safely hidden behind a combination-locked door, the novelty of dining in a subterranean former barbershop kind of disappears.

So is Nōksu worth it? Ultimately, that depends on how much you like tweezers, and being able to say you ate a Korean-influenced tasting menu in a subway station. There are foams, and gels, a few edible flowers, and each course involves tweezing of some kind—sometimes, there’s even more than one person tweezing at a time. It depends on your response to someone in a suit serving you an egg custard with grilled surf clams and caviar, and telling you: “this is when it gets hard to eat, because it’s all just so beautiful.” (And it is all beautiful.)  

If you end up here with the person in your life who likes a good hidden restaurant story, and has the equivalent of 78 subway trips to spend on a meal, it’s not all gels and foams. Take the eighth course, for example: a squab head, breast, and leg in a pool of gochujang agrodolce, served with a truffle bao that’s filled with squab gizzard char siu, and puffed duck feet with squab liver parfait. There’s some interesting cooking going on here, and it’ll make even the most tweezer-averse person happy they came. Even if it’s just so they can say they once ate a pigeon at Herald Square.

The exterior of Nōksu.

photo credit: Nōksu

A dish at Nōksu.

photo credit: Nōksu

A dish at Nōksu.

photo credit: Nōksu

slivers of mackerel on a plate

photo credit: Nōksu

The exterior of Nōksu.
A dish at Nōksu.
A dish at Nōksu.
slivers of mackerel on a plate

Included In

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