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sushi in nyc

my kids went to sushi of gari in nyc and felt totally ripped off by the small portions and expensive bill...any suggestions for good sushi not outrageously priced....they are on the upper east side...

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      1. too bad they didnt appreciate sushi of gari; yes it's wildly expensive (especially the omakase) but to me it was worth every penny. It's another class of sushi. If they just want standard decent sushi, I agree with Sushi Hana, Poke Sushi, Ichiro, Gaiyumaru all on the UES.

        1 Reply
        1. re: jeanki

          Ichiro is our "cheap but good" sushi place. And I agree - it's too bad they didn't enjoy Gari - it is expensive, but the best items are ones not listed on the menu - you "find out" about them by ordering omakase, and then figuring out which ones you like, and then ordering them a la carte from then on. If they didn't do that, I highly recommend that they give it a try another time. When I see people there who've not been before, I always want to (and sometimes do) give them that recommendation. And, aside from the fried oyster roll, it's not the place for rolls, in my opinion.

        2. thanks for the resposes...they will have to try ordering omakase......by the way....what is omakase????

          1 Reply
          1. re: karins

            Basically it means chef's selection, you are asking the chef to serve you whatever he thinks is best that day. At Gari it will not be cheap but many on CH love it. It is also best to communicate with the chef beforehand if there are any types of seafood you do not like; sometimes you get the most interesting (and delcious) stuff if you say ahead of time that you want to try unusual and different foods.

          2. be careful, if you are looking for less expensive, omakase at gari is
            not the way to go, though it is really good. omakase for two will run
            you close to $300 with drink, tax, tip. poke used to be really good but
            quality is down since the move. there are not that many good sushi
            places on the UES. I would suggest downtown (east village/gramercy), tomoe,
            hasaki, yama are all good and inexpensive, and only a short
            cab or subway ride away.

            1 Reply
            1. re: chundi

              I've never spent that much for two at Gari. They have a prescribed "chef's choice" menu item, which is an omakase. We do feel lucky if we get out for under $200 - usually a bit more with tax & tip. This is probably with 2-3 glasses or wine/basic sake a piece.

              I say this not to dispute chundi - it would be very easy to get to $300, just that it's possible to have this kind of meal w/o doing so.

            2. I find sushi hana to be of a very pool quality. My faves on the UES that are actually very affordable are, Guyjamuro (for sushi and sashimi), Poke for everything, Inase (for sushi and sashimi), Tsuki (for sushi pizza and fuji roll).

              1 Reply
              1. re: girlcritic

                I'd forgotten about Tsuki - used to really enjoy it - just a little further afield from us than Ichiro.

              2. I am one of the kids that Karins speaks of. My wife and I each ordered the Omakase. We told the server we were looking to spend 50 bucks each. He brought over 5 pieces of fish and one roll. I was pretty surprised to find out that no more food was coming. We ended up ordering a couple more rolls and a soup because we were both still starving. If we had eaten the Omakase until we were satified and money was no object, I personally would have eaten 150-200 dollars worth of fish. The fish was fresh and creative, but certainly not worth what we spent. We left hungry, unsatisfied, and in the hole $150. I would have rather spent less and left Nobu very satisfied. Or spent a little more and enjoyed my night at the James Beard House. Maybe in a couple of years I will return to sushi of gari with $400 to spend on fish. But probably not.

                2 Replies
                1. re: BCohen21

                  I agree the portions are small; it is more for tasting than for filling up. I had to have about $100 worth of omakase to feel gently full (about 14 pieces) as a female. A hungry male would, yes, probably need more. But I personally felt the freshness and harmony of the flavors were brilliant and transcendent and worth the outlandish expense (although I certainly can't do it a lot on my budget). I don't think $50 omakase would do it justice; I planned to spend around $60 initially but realized I just had to go with the flow for this one time to really give it props (plus I couldn't stop it was so good.)

                  I've been to Nobu and actually didn't find it as mindblowing flavorwise, although yes you will get much more full there (they have nice size portions), and it's a different type of cuisine/not a sushi gestalt. To each their own.

                  1. re: BCohen21

                    i went to Gari a few years ago and loathed it...rude service, no atmosphere, merely good fish, and a huge bill...

                    if you want to head downtown, try the omakase at Ushi Wakamaru...traditional sushi (no mayonaisey sauces like they do at Gari), mostly Japanese clientele, and a relaxed atmosphere...

                  2. Taro Sushi on Dean Street between 5th Avenue and Flatbush Ave in Brooklyn. Make reservations on a Friday or Saturday when the owner/head sushi chef, Sano is there and ask him for Omakase. The fish is one of the freshest and tastiest in NYC and if you ask him for a special appetizer from the kitchen you will not be disappointed.

                    1. I just went to Inase on the Upper East Side last week and it was amazing! I only got tuna, yellowtail and salmon sushi but it was so fresh!!! And if you ask then they'll use their "special sauce" so need for soy sauce. Good prices too.

                      1. My favorite sushi restaurant in NYC is Tomoe (Houston and Thompson). It's a hole in the wall and you'll probably have to stand in line but it's worth it. The fish is extremely fresh, the portions are large and the sashimi melts in your mouth. The price is easy on the wallet as well. The ambiance, however, is lacking - it's literally a hole in the wall.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: marleneca54

                          I was (am?) a die-hard fan of Tomoe (used to line up at 4:40 on weekends to get in on the first seating and minimize my wait), but ever since the chef left and Chowhounders started telling horror stories, I haven't been back for fear of sullying its memory ... I guess I'll get back eventually. With Lupa next door, that block of Thompson packed a mean culinary 1-2 punch.

                          Gari is also way out of budget for me to go with any sort of regularity, but the *one* time I went we spent ~$300 for two and I think it was well worth it. I certainly won't forget the experience, and there must be dozens of $50 Manhattan meals that I've since forgotten. It would only take three of them to wipe out the same amount of cash ...

                        2. Definitely go to Tsuki on 75th and 1st. Get the Sushi/Sashimi combo for $27 and be full afterwards. Its' my favorite on the Upper East Side and it's a great value! Great cold sake too!

                          1. Kyoto on Lexington and 83rd. The Manhattan roll is awesome.