New York: Top Japanese Spots in Lower Manhattan List

Upon moving to New York City, one of the least expected findings was the wide variety of incredible Japanese eats and drinks in Lower Manhattan. From udon to sake-based cocktails, there will be something for everyone on this list. 

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Angel’s Share

Inside Village Yokocho at 8 Stuyvesant St New York, NY 10003 | Yelp

Speakeasy “hidden” on the second floor within a sushi restaurant, once you’ve gotten a seat and tried a drink, you’ll know why it’s worth the wait. They have incredible cocktails that are worth every penny.

 

Bar Goto

245 Eldridge St New York, NY 10002 | Yelp

Rectangular okonomiyaki, celery sticks, and miso chicken wings. The three things you need and only need in life. This spot is a bit unsuspecting and upon first entry, you could be pretty skeptical. However, the food is quite delicious. There are also cocktails and beer to compliment your food (or I guess you could just drink).

 

Benemon

108 E 4th St New York, NY 10003 | Yelp

Japanese comfort food for the soul including some of the best curry and rice bowls.

Favorite dish will always be the una-tama don which includes a delicious mix of unagi, egg, mushroom, and sauce over a bowl of rice.

 

Cha-An

230 E 9th St, Fl 2 New York, NY 10003 | Yelp

Japanese tea room serving delicious savory, sweet, and bubbly varieties. A little pricey for a smaller portion but worth the try.

Favorite dish will always be the warubi mochi.

Tip: This place is normally packed for dessert but you can also do dinner and drinks here.

 

Cocoran

37 Kenmare St New York, NY 10012 | cocoranandgoemon.comYelp

Soba to stay, please. Cocoran is known to serve up both hot and cold soba styles in a large menu of your choosing.

Favorite dishes include the warm mera mera soba and mentai mochi spring roll.

Tip: There are two locations basically on the same street (Delancey turned into Kenmare). If one is closed, the other is probably open.

 

Goemon

29 Kenmare St New York, NY 10012 | cocoronandgoemon.com | Yelp

Japanese curry to warm the soul! If you need dense, flavorful, and hearty sauce to rice ratio for the day, Goemon is your go to.

Favorite dishes include Mama’s Taste curry, Aged premium curry, tempura mushrooms, and any of their lassi.

Tip: Cash only so be prepared. Also, yes, this establishment is also owned by the same owners of Cocoran and Mocoran.

 

Hi-Collar

214 E 10th St New York, NY 10003 | hi-collar.com | Yelp

Sit down only (no standing room) sake bar with good small bites and sake cocktails. This is a great spot for two or three people at a time to share a bite and enjoy delicious drinks while being able to enjoy the company of one another. There are also unique menus for the early night (breakfast and lunch) which differ from the late night drinks.

Favorites for the late night include Sumi Ika (charcoal grilled squid), Ankimo, all cocktails and of course, ask for a recommendation.

 

Ise Restaurant

63 Cooper Sq New York, NY 10003 | Yelp

Japanese focused on handmade buckwheat soba.

Favorite dishes include the Hexagon bento which comes in 3 levels with cold soba, nigiri, salmon prepared in three ways. Also, squid ink soba with ikura and uni.

Tip: Book a reservation ahead of time to make sure you get a seat. This place gets packed at dinner. There’s also good lunch special pricing.

 

Kuro-Obi by Ippudo

Various Locations including within Canal Street Market and Urbanspace | kuroobi.nyc

While we’re all familiar with Ippudo, the same owners have introduced the quick serve, small bowl/format of Kuro-Obi presenting just a few options, prepared fresh for you on the go. While the portions and topping aren’t mind-blowing, it’ll be satisfying enough.

Favorite dish is the Red Belt.

 

Kuu Ramen

20 John St New York, NY 10038 | kuuramen.comYelp 

A very unexpected find, Kuu Ramen, located in the Financial District serves up quality ramen that’s suitable and affordable for the lunch crowd (also for dinner). The no-fuss menu includes several ramen types, dons, and appetizers.

Favorite ramen will always be Kuu Chili.

Tip: The lunch crowd is always packed but well worth it. They prepare very well for takeout.

 

Raku

342 E 6th St New York, NY 10003 | Yelp

Japanese udon to warm your soul. They’re a small establishment now with two locations that’ll serve you some of the best warm and cold udon. Try the East Village location for true small format Japanese restaurant vibes.

Favorite dishes include ankimo pate (monkfish liver), Chikara udon (chicken, toyko negi, and mochi), Niku udon (honeycomb tripe and beef short rib), and always with yasai tempura (vegetable) on the side.

Tip: You can join the line on the waitlist from the Yelp app which will save you some wait time outside the restaurant.

 

Sake Bar Decibel

240 E 9th St New York, NY 10003 | sakebardecibel.com | Yelp

Dive, grungy, literally underground. Sake Bar Decibel is probably the definition of character. This spot, which you can find by looking for the “On Air” sign, fills up all night but worth the wait to get into a crowded bar (the front and the back). Specializing in a ridiculous amount of sake, they also provide some cheap eats that’s not going to be the most mindblowing but still delicious (frozen foods, prepped ingeniously via microwaves and small ovens).

Tip: Ask for a sake recommendation. Also, get the takowasa to have along with your drinks.

 

Sunrise Mart

sunrisemart-ny.com 

Japanese grocery store delight with inexpensive warm and cold meals to go for the lunch crowd.

Tip: The Broome St location is larger and has a better variety of cooked foods. 

 

What’s your favorite?

Leave a comment and let us know your favorites. We’ll also update this post periodically to keep our faves up to date.

 


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