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Visiting Upper East Side - restaurant suggestion? Sushi?

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Where should we eat?! We are staying for one night in the Marriot in the UES and want a relatively affordable dinner option. Japanese would be great. I haven't had amazing sushi in a while. Any suggestions?

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  1. The Marriott on 92nd St?

    How much do you want to spend on a sushi meal? Including tax, tip, and drinks?

    3 Replies
    1. re: gutsofsteel

      Yes thats the one. Hmm, not sure exactly. We don't drink alcohol so maybe around 100 for the two of us? Its not a strict guideline though. Is that reasonable?

      1. re: cups123

        Yes, that budget is doable...I would recommend Gajyumaru, on 1st Ave between 86th - 87th. Very pleasant service at the tables, it's a little place, fresh good quality fish and good prepared things from the kitchen as well.

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        Gajyumaru
        1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

        1. re: gutsofsteel

          One of my favorites - we've been going almost every Friday night for the last year or more.

    2. how about sushi suki?

      10 Replies
      1. re: cups123

        Suki is mediocre at best. Not at the same level as Gajyumaru at all.

        1. re: gutsofsteel

          oh okay. I was reading reviews on yelp. Its so hard, so contradicting! I want a place like Yasuda mmmmm so good. Is gajyumaru the same idea? I don't need really fancy creative sushi, I like traditional but amazingly fresh sushi.

          1. re: cups123

            Gajyumaru is not Yasuda, nor does it cost like Yasuda. Gajyumaru is a solid, serious neighborhood Japanese restaurant with skilled sushi chefs and a skilled kitchen, and I think it is well priced for what they serve. It is not "creative sushi" - it's a traditional place. They often have interesting specials.

            They do not usually have very high end fatty toro available....the demand isn't there. But what they do have is good. Don't miss the house made soft tofu.

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            Gajyumaru
            1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

            1. re: gutsofsteel

              what places would you liken to yasuda?
              Is Gajyumaru the closest thing to yasuda without the price?

              1. re: cups123

                If you want to go to Yasuda why not go to Yasuda?

                High end sushi is expensive.

                Gajyumaru is near your hotel, you asked about the UES, it's a good small sushi place serving fresh fish, skillfully prepared, and very nice kitchen cooked items too. It is well pried for the quality.

                If you want to spend more money, you can go to Sushi of Gari - quite expensive, but in the neighborhood as well.

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                Gajyumaru
                1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                Gari
                370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

                1. re: gutsofsteel

                  very true, i wanted to stay in the area and was hoping to just try something new, you know?

                  1. re: cups123

                    Yes - so go to Gajyumaru.

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                    Gajyumaru
                    1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                    1. re: gutsofsteel

                      I wonder if Gajyumaru has improved since my last time there -- about a year ago. I really wanted to like it, but I was not happy. Their eel was not good -- very ordinary. Their dumplings were inedible (and I have a wide tolerance for dumplings). Also, the rice was not seasoned well and was gummy. I was very disappointed.

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                      Gajyumaru
                      1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                      1. re: gutsofsteel

                        You really like this Gajyumaru place, don't you?

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                        Gajyumaru
                        1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                        1. re: Uncle Yabai

                          For the neighborhood and the price point - yes.

        2. Splurge and go to Sushi of Gari. Other affordable options which are good but not what I consider amazing: Ichiro, Ooki, Tenzan, Poke (cash only), Amber, Mr. Ginger, Ko.

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          Ichiro
          1694 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

          Gari
          370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

          Mr. Ginger
          1572 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028

          Tenzan
          988 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10022

          2 Replies
          1. re: UES Mayor

            Tenzan is the bottom of the sushi barrel - not fresh, crudely cut, bad selection. Avoid. Poke is absurdly overpriced for what it is. I also like Tsuki and Inase, but Gajyumaru is more convenient to the OP's location and more traditional Japanese, and their cooked dishes are the best in the neighborhood (although Inase does a decent job in that department too).

            Problem with Inase is that it is a very low traffic place so their fish selection has really decreased in the last year. Tsuki can be hit or miss.

            Sushi of Gari is very good but it is very expensive - not what the OP is looking for.

            As far as Gjyumaru goes, I haven't had dumplings there in a long time. Last couple of visits have been very satisfactory.

            -----
            Inase
            1586 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

            Gajyumaru
            1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

            Gari
            370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

            Tsuki
            1410 1st Ave, New York, NY 10021

            Tenzan
            988 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10022

            1. re: gutsofsteel

              I agree on all counts.

          2. sushi of gari for expensive creative sushi (ignore the map here its showing the west side branch)

            for non sushi japanese tatany 72

            1. I enjoy Inase more than any of the other places mentioned here, with the exception of Gari, which is a different kind of thing.

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              Inase
              1586 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

              Gari
              370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

              1. Yuko

                http://www.menupages.com/restaurants/...

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                Yuko
                1531 York Ave, New York, NY 10028

                1. Depending on how far you'd like to travel, Wajima on E. 61th between Park and Lexington is a good option. They almost always have uni (and quail egg, if you like), which has consistently been good quality when I've ordered it. It's low-key on ambiance and, although I've never visited for dinner, their sashimi special should fit your bill.

                  I concur with the recommendation of Poke mentioned earlier. Poke is excellent for rolls, if that's what you prefer.

                  If you'd like to branch out beyond the Upper East Side, try Sakagura on E. 43rd Street (basement level) for a truly unique dining experience. You can be economical there with some careful planning.

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                  Sakagura
                  211 East 43rd Street, New York, NY 10017

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: jaykay21

                    If Poke is "excellent" then what is Gari? What is Seki? Superduper excellent?

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                    Gari
                    370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

                    1. re: gutsofsteel

                      Sushi of Gari is excellent quality, but, as you said, it is very expensive and not what the poster is seeking.

                      I have not yet eaten at Sushi Seki.

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                      Gari
                      370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

                  2. Sasabune on 73rd and 1st is a great choice.

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                    Sasabune
                    401 E 73rd St, New York, NY 10021

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Fastov

                      sasabune is not an inexpensive place. not a moderate one either. it's costly.

                    2. Donguri-83rd

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: chaz

                        i have not been to donguri since the original owners left - what was that 7 or more years ago, but at least then, i wouldn't have gone for the sushi. their strength is in other japanese foods

                      2. If all this info boggles the mind and at the end of the day your just tired and hungry... go around the corner to York Grill on 89th and York. Nothing special,.. but good food in a pleasant atmosphere.
                        Or, if you have the energy to walk... Cafe d'Alsace on 2nd and 88th. (Beer and French.)

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                        Cafe d'Alsace
                        1695 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10128

                        York Grill
                        1690 York Ave, New York, NY 10128

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Gelaine

                          i used to be a regular at york grill - i'd say its a notch above nothing special

                          1. re: thew

                            I agree. It's a neighborhood place, nothing more.

                        2. Off the radar and very good is Takesushi on 2nd Ave and 54th street. It caters to Japanese salarymen but the quality is very good and the price is reasonable. Gajyumaru has great chirashi. A notch down would be Haru (Bar) on E. 76h and SushiHana on 2nd and 78th.

                          I would also question why you are limiting yourself to the upper eastside? This is Manhattan, man....live it up!! Kanoyama on 2nd Ave and 11th street is a great place to try as well as the many other sushi joints around the east village. And as mentioned by others, if you're willing to splurge, you can't go wrong with Sushi of Gari on E. 78th (eastside location). Enjoy!

                          -----
                          Kanoyama
                          175 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

                          1. On Third bet. 93 and 94 Isohama. Not well known, but wonderful, fresh, simple food. I mostly eat sashimi, not sushi, but it is great. It has been around for many years - under the radar.

                            -----
                            Isohama
                            1666 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10128

                            10 Replies
                            1. re: JC2

                              I've gone there a couple of times, but do prefer Gjyumaru.

                              -----
                              Gajyumaru
                              1659 1st Ave, New York, NY 10028

                              1. re: MMRuth

                                This place is just another Korean run "sushi" bar. Their fish is boring and not fresh. The selection is awful and over priced. Stay away and cook at home!

                                1. re: pups224

                                  that place is a different place with a different name now

                                  1. re: thew

                                    I've not noticed that -- same name outside as far as I can tell, and same employees.

                                    1. re: MMRuth

                                      Just had another amazing meal at sushi bar (the dimunitive one up front) last night. I believe this place flies under the radar cause it has been around so long and not a glitzy place. Very dated enviroment BUT the sushi and side dishes the chef makes is top notch. I always enoy the quality and variety here.

                                      -----
                                      Tokubei 86
                                      314 E 86th St, New York, NY 10028

                                      1. re: UES Mayor

                                        I've been there many times. It's a fine neighborhood place. But "amazing" or "top notch?" No way.

                                        1. re: gutsofsteel

                                          Perhaps I am one who gets special treatment-it really is top notch and I am an authentic foodie-not to mention the UES Mayor!

                                          1. re: UES Mayor

                                            They simply do not get top quality fish and and do not have top quality skills. Whether or not you get special treatment, that doesn't change.

                                            I mean when you compare Tokubei to 15 East or Shinbashi or Ushiwakamaru, etc etc...it is far, far from top notch.

                                            -----
                                            15 East
                                            15 East 15th Street, New York, NY 10003

                                            Shinbashi
                                            7 East 48th Street, New York, NY 10017

                                        2. re: UES Mayor

                                          I didn't realize there was a sushi bar up front -- thought it was just a regular bar, and then the sushi bar in the back?

                                        3. re: MMRuth

                                          Ruth I haven't been there (Gajyumaru) since I noticed it, but there is a different name on it now.