Japanese buffet / Watami alike? / Black sesame ice-cream
I'm going to visit NYC soon and I'm looking for a good all you can eat sushi buffet that is not too expensive. I tried Yaku the last time that I was here, and while I liked it, there weren't that many selections. I prefer a buffet where you order the food you want versus the ones where you go stand in a line and get what's already put out.
Also, when I was in Hong Kong, I ate at a restaurant called Watami (http://www.watami.com.hk/eng/menu.asp). I was told that there is a branch in New York but after doing a search, I discovered that this is not the case. Is there a similar restaurant that my friend might have confused it with? I really like Watami and would love to go to an alike if there is such one.
Lastly, which restaurants serve black sesame ice-cream??? I've been craving it for monthhhhs.
Watami is a mid-range Japanese chain izakaya. There's no branch here in NYC, but in Manhattan, you might want to try Sake Bar Hagi or Izakaya Riki, which have similar vibes, menus, and prices. You can do a Manhattan board search for "izakaya" to come up with other options, but those two remind me of the Watami in Japan.
There is a Todai sushi buffet in Manhattan's 32nd street. Not far from Empire State Building. If you are a buffet enthusiast, you migh have already been to one somewhere else in the US or in other parts of the world. Its not my favorite sushi buffet place but it does off a variety of food and it is an international sushi buffet chain (branches in the US and Asia). Here is the website: http://www.todai.com/
I actually prefer going to Minado (Todai basically inherited Manhatta's Minado buffet's old spot on 32nd street a couple of years ago but there still a few Minados in NJ/Long Island). If you don't mind going to New Jersey or Long Island you can check out their website:
I have been to the locations in Little Ferry, NJ and Morris Plains, NJ.
I find Minado's food a little better than Todai's. (I think Todai's quality varies from location to location but the one in Manhattan is not one of the better ones, although I have had the worst one in Arcadia, Calif!).
Buffet restuarants are not too popular in Manhattan because the rent is too high to justify people eating all the food they see for one single price. However, there are a many good Japanese restaurants in Manhattan so you might want to search the board to check them out, in case you have already been to Todai... or if you do not wish to travel to NJ to check out Minado. Wish you a good (food) trip in NY.
P.S. Chinatown Ice Cream Factory sells Black Sesame Ice Cream. It's pretty good. I believe someone has mentioned it earlier too. It's on Bayard Street in Manhattan Chinatown. For your information, here is their website:
sundaes and cones (east village) has a great black sesame ice cream, and you don't need to eat in a restaurant to get it!
Thanks for all the input! So glad that there are so many choices for black sesame ice cream!! I was looking for it for the longest time in Boston but the closest thing that I found was some mediocre black sesame sorbet. So excited!
Anyway, I think I might end up skipping the buffet and look around for a Japanese restaurant instead. I'll definitely look into Sake Bar Hagi or Izakaya Riki. Thanks!