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Soba restaurants in NYC

  • j

I'd like to try out at least one of the specialty soba places in NYC on my next trip. I see at least five places. What are the pros and cons of these? If you want to recommend a best, go ahead:

http://www.cocoron-soba.com/index.html
http://www.sobatotto.com/
http://www.restaurantnippon.com/soba/...
http://www.sobaya-nyc.com/
http://nymag.com/listings/restaurant/...

While I'm at it, what are the recommendations for top udon?

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  1. Foodwise, i'd say Soba Koh (5th St), hands down...their inaka soba is superb, and the anago tempura not bad either...really haven't had any soba noodle that comes close to their inaka soba in quality outside of Japan...

    Soba Totto is a fun little place...i like the cozy bar...food varies *widely* -- sometimes yummy, sometimes disgraceful...usually fine and a fun spot anyway...

    Soba-ya used to be good but is now quite bad...i'd put it on the avoid list...or at least at the very bottom of places to try...

    Haven't been to new place Cocoron yet...plan to get there eventually, but it's hard for me to go there when Soba Koh is closer to my house and has more of the traditional styles that i like...some respected folk here have enjoyed it though...it's supposedly not traditional soba though, in terms of the options and protein sides, so be prepared to slurp w/ an open mind/palate...

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    Soba-ya
    229 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003

    SobaKoh
    309 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

    Soba Totto
    211 E 43rd St, New York, NY 10017

    Cocoron
    61 Delancey St, New York, NY 10002

    5 Replies
    1. re: Simon

      Just tried Soba Koh on this recommendation. They were out of the inaka, which was a little disappointing. However, the Uni Ikura Soba cold soba with sea urchin and salmon roe was insanely good.

      The kinoko soba with 3 mushrooms was less flavorful than expected and a little bit of a disappointment.

      1. re: jaba

        i pretty much get the uni ikura soba everytime i go there, its really good

      2. re: Simon

        What happened to Soba-ya? It used to be my favoroite soba place, and then I also noticed over the years that they were declining. The bento box sets definitely got less appetizing over time. Was there a change of ownership or something?

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        Soba-ya
        229 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003

        1. re: FattyDumplin

          i thought that soba ya was inferior to soba koh for a long time like at least 5+ years although someone told me that a long time ago as you said soba ya was better than it is now

          1. re: Lau

            interesting. I moved to new york in 2005, so yeah, that would foot well with our timeline as i noticed the dropoff about 2 years in and I gradually stopped going.

      3. ive been to all of these except soba totto. I like cocoron for sort of newer innovative soba and their awesome sticky rice chicken meatballs, but its a very small restaurant and it has gotten very popular, so there is usually a wait i recommend going a little on the early side. i like soba koh for more traditional soba as well as their tamago yaki.

        i think soba koh and cocoron are much better than soba ya. soba nippon is decent, but i think the previously mentioned are better although i like their beef salad alot (their sister restaurant nippon is def an underrated japanese restaurant in NY)

        my cocoron review: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/761491

        my soba koh review: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/774314

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        Soba Nippon
        19 W 52nd St, New York, NY 10019

        Nippon
        155 E 52nd St, New York, NY 10022

        1 Reply
        1. re: Lau

          I agree completely with Lau about the differences between SobaKoh and Cocoron and also that they are the best.

          I love both, and it's hard to decide if I like Cocoron's modern/innovative take on soba or SobaKoh's more traditional, purist approach. If you're the same way, then here some other factors to consider for your visit: Cocoron doesn't have air conditioning, and doesn't take reservations. SobaKoh does have AC and does take reservations. Hmmmm.

          So if your dining partners are the least bit whiny, I'd go to SobaKoh. :) If not, you'll have a fabulous time at either!

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          SobaKoh
          309 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

          Cocoron
          61 Delancey St, New York, NY 10002

        2. Thanks for the good information so far; keep them coming. Sounds like SobaKoh should be my first stop for some traditional soba. Then, perhaps I'll have time to explore some of the alternatives.

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          SobaKoh
          309 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

          2 Replies
          1. re: jman1

            Thanks to everyone. I visited SobaKoh yesterday and enjoyed it. Now, I'm going to regret not having something similar in the San Francisco area.

            Also visited Tori Shin during the trip. Again, very nice. However, we have a couple of almost comparable places out west.

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            SobaKoh
            309 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

            1. re: jman1

              glad you enjoyed sobakoh, its pretty tasty