You’ve probably heard people talking about The Izakaya without even realizing it. Such is the power of an incredibly generic name. This place is, in fact, a little izakaya in the East Village, and it’s a bright, minimalist space with plain white walls decorated with a couple of hats (for some reason). But as unremarkable as this place might seem, the food here is surprisingly delicious. The thick-cut salmon sashimi, for example, comes in chunks the size of 12-sided dice, which is officially how we’d like to eat all of our raw fish from now on. The chicken nanban is also very good (especially with the creamy sauce on the side), and you can get a table here pretty easily.
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El Rinconcito is a Dominican restaurant in the East Village that’s been around for over 20 years and makes some fantastic mofongo.
Mister Paradise is an East Village bar where you can get a casual cocktail made with buckwheat or fermented habanero. Try it for a first date.
Fiaschetteria Pistoia is an East Village restaurant from some Italians who have another restaurant in Tuscany. It’s all about the handmade pasta.
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Mo’s Original is an affordable ramen spot in Prospect Lefferts Gardens with smoked jerk meats that will make you wish you had a smoker of your own.
An underground izakaya on 35th Street best used for drunk nights after a show at Madison Square Garden.
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Tuome in the East Village is doing something totally different with familiar Asian menu items.
Sushi By M
Sushi By M is a no-frills spot in the East Village where you sit at a counter and eat an excellent 10-piece sushi omakase for $50.
Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya
Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya on the Lower East Side is an ideal destination for impressing a big group of sushi, meat, or veggie-loving friends.
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