Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
Dec 17, 2009 10:57 AM

Yasuda with Deep Pockets - What to Order?

I'm going to Yasuda for the first time the Friday.

What must I order? Do they offer omakasa?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. At Yasuda, they give you a sheet where the fish that the chef recommends is marked in red. I'm assuming that this means the freshest fish, though I can see a cynic saying that the fish marked in red will be the oldest fish that they're trying to get rid of. From my experience, it's the freshest ones as I once had a not so hot uni that didn't have the red mark. The uni wasn't bad like the dirty underwear one I've had many years ago at cheap sushi joint. But it wasn't that great either. So after that experience I wouldn't get uni (which is known to go bad very quickly) unless it has the red mark.

    1. hopefully you are sitting at the bar and can do omikase. You may make requests but usually you should just sit back and let the meal develop as the chef decides for you. You will probably be handed a daily fish offering that you may pick from too, including if you want to repeat something. From there you can pick the most over the top expensive item they have and heck, get a double order of it

      seriously, just get the omikase and enjoy.

      9 Replies
      1. re: dhs

        Sit at the bar in front of Yasuda if possible and order the omikase.

        Unless of course you are overly picky then you might want to order from the menu. To me though that defeats the purpose of going to a high end sushi place. It is better to leave it to the Sushi-ya, you won't be disappointed.

        1. re: MVNYC

          I really think it depends on the person. If one isn't familiar with the different types of fish out there, an omakase is a good way to try things that you wouldn't have tried in the past. And if you're one of those people who tend to agonize over what to pick on the menu, an omakase can be beneficial in that the choosing has been done for you.

          I'm not picky, but I certainly have my preferences in terms of sushi. May not be a perfectly balanced meal in terms of my selections, but I'd rather order what I like as opposed to sitting through a few orders of items I'm not crazy about (ie. fluke). And as I'm a freak about their steamed crab innards appetizer (don't always find this in restaurants), I must have it if it's offered.

          1. re: Miss Needle

            As long as you're not too picky omakase should be fine. They ask you if there are things you do/dont like and go from there.

            The first time I had uni at Yasuda was not long after having it at Tsukiji fish market. I didn't think there was an extreme difference in quality. Maybe it was a bad day?

            1. re: silverlainy

              Perhaps it was a bad day. I've had uni before at Yasuda (and many other sushi restaurants) with no problem at all. Didn't recall whether there was a red mark. But the last time I had it (two months ago?), it wasn't very good at all. DH, who normally can put away the uni, didn't order any more after the first round.

            2. re: Miss Needle

              Well Omikase is not iron clad. You can always supplement with additional items or make requests for things you do not like. Personally I like leaving it in the hands of someone who selects the fish and has years of experience to give me what I would enjoy best. Granted it takes a few trips to a place for the chef to figure out what your tastes are. However you can make your preferences known before hand as to which types of fish you enjoy. Lucky for me I like to eat everything. While I am fairly knowledgeable about fish, places like this give me the opportunity to try different species, cuts or stages of fish that I have not previously had.

              I warned the original poster about pickiness because there has been a proliferation of threads recently where people are disappointed when going to city institutions by ordering the wrong things or having unrealistic interpretation. It wasn't meant to imply all those that do not order omikase are picky.

              1. re: Miss Needle

                i usually get omakase, but that steamed crab innards app sounds great (i love that stuff) and i've never tried it, i owe my gf yasuda anyhow as i lost a bet to her...guess ill be making a res this week

                1. re: Lau

                  I really love that stuff as well. When I was growing up, the innards were the best part. Luckily, our family ate mostly Baltimore crabs cooked Korean casserole style (with gochujang and daenjang) so there were always enough crab tops for all of us. But DH is partial to Dungeoness crabs and we sometimes run into a problem dividing the innards as we generally only share one crab.

                  If your girlfriend is feeling decadent, that can be quite an expensive bet you lost. Hope you enjoy your meal at Yasuda!

                  1. re: Miss Needle

                    hey is the crab innards app on the menu? (so i know where to look for it when i go)

                    are you talking about kokaetang? i love that stuff, if you ever go to LA let me know there is a kokaetang restaurant you have to try

                    1. re: Lau

                      The last time I was there (about 1.5 months ago) it was there. But I'd probably call ahead to make sure as they don't have their menu posted online. I think calling at a non-busy time would be a good idea as the reservation guy can be quite a grouch at times.

                      Yup, about the ko kae tang. It's really good and something I haven't been able to find at the Korean restaurants in NYC. I wanted to try to attempt to make it at home but I'm kind of chicken at cutting up live crab. I'm actually flying through LA in about a week but won't have enough time to eat any meals. I'll definitely let you know the next time I'm out there. Too bad you can't find it in NYC -- it's one of my favorite things.

          2. I recently went a couple of weeks ago and did the omakase at the bar. I wasn't in Yasuda's corner but my chef was fantastic none the less. He asked what we disliked. We told him both dislikes and likes. He pampered us with a great variety of fish. The uni I had was fantastically fresh and buttery. The chef was very attentive and made sure to ask us if we wanted more. They will charge by the piece. We had just one repeat from our own request because the toro was just that good.

            In the end, it was the best sushi and service I've ever had. I recommend making reservations for a seat at the bar and do the omakase.

            Oh and for price point, we each had 22 pieces of sushi and paid about $300 (including tax, tip, 1 beer, and 1 sake).

            1. "Omakase" just means chef's choice. You can order that and put yourself in the chef's hands and then supplement with repeat items or other things you want to try. The red circles indicate recommendations, limited season items, special acquisitions, or things that they are highlighting. It might mean that they are trying to move some items. The uni, whether highlighted or not, is going to be fresh. It's highly perishable, not to mention very popular at Yasuda. If you have deep pockets, it's fun to order varieties of single types to compare. For example, trying a series of different squid or shrimp or uni. He usually has many types of tuna from not only different locations but from different parts of the tuna's body. Usually a good variety of eel as well. If you sit in front of Yasuda-san, he can be a bit of a huckster upselling multiple items. Some people find this oft-putting, but if you've got deep pockets, it's fun to indulge. I don't know if the other chefs do this.

              1. If you're lucky, he'll have multiple types of toro. Get all of them.

                Then get one of every uni. Maybe two of them in a handroll at the end (his nori is phenomenal)

                Then one of every eel.

                Does anyone know if it's scallop roe season yet? I could probably eat 10 scallop roe in a row and not get tired of them.

                Peace passage oysters.

                If you have no strong sushi preferences, just let him choose. You'll get a broad selection, and he tends to give them in pairs and triplets so you can compare. If you do have preferences, I recommend looking through the list, letting him know which pieces you definitely want, and let him build a meal for you based on your preferences. My first meal there was good (and a major educational experience for me), but at the beginning of my second meal, I let him know I definitely wanted uni, a peace passage oyster, and kama toro, and got a phenomenal meal - he went heavy on shellfish and roe, lighter on non-fatty fish. Not preferences I could have articulated before that meal, but he picked up on it and did a fantastic job of tailoring it to my likes.

                2 Replies
                1. re: daveena

                  I have to stop reading this string of posts because I'm dying for some fish! Sounds so friggin' good. I will be there in a few weeks. I'm in....

                  1. re: danieli10

                    Yeah this is really making me crave yasuda. Must make reservations for january.

                    Yasuda (and prob the other sushi chefs) have an excellent memory for your taste if you goa few times. He remembered exactly what my friend's ordered her first time sitting in front of him over a year ago. Now that she's a regular he makes sure to save her favorites when she reserves a spot.