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15 East - sushi bar or table?

c
comiendosiempre Mar 7, 2012 06:19 PM

Two of us are heading to 15 East for a birthday celebration. We want the "complete experience" so to speak. Yet we also would like some privacy. Can we get both at a table or, we really should sit at the sushi bar? She loves uni, etc, me less so on the uni front. We also may want some cooked options. Can we get those at the sushi bar, no problem? Thanks In advance.

  1. Cheeryvisage Mar 7, 2012 06:49 PM

    You should sit at the sushi bar for the best experience. You can ask for cooked dishes too at the bar. To get a bit of privacy, reserve the two seats on the shorter side of the L-shaped bar.

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

    1 Reply
    1. re: Cheeryvisage
      s
      Simon Mar 7, 2012 07:21 PM

      Agreed. A friend of mine recently had a great meal at the tables. But the bar is my preference.

    2. s
      SomeRandomIdiot Mar 7, 2012 06:55 PM

      If you want the complete experience, my vote is for the bar. You can have cooked food at the bar. I was even able to order a pasta dish from the Tocqueville menu.

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

      17 Replies
      1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
        f
        foodwhisperer Mar 7, 2012 08:41 PM

        I've never seen anyone able to order anything from Tocqueville at 15 East. interesting

        1. re: foodwhisperer
          s
          SomeRandomIdiot Mar 7, 2012 09:11 PM

          I guess normal people sit at the bar and just eat sushi. But I was on my 25th piece and starting to repeat pieces so I decided to have something I really enjoyed the week before. Ended up with 35 pieces total plus the pasta and 3 brioche rolls.

          1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
            f
            foodwhisperer Mar 7, 2012 09:15 PM

            You have surely won my respect. Good Job! that's what I call eating. I 'm usually good for about 20 pieces, and a few other items. I will have to think about getting pasta next time.

            1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
              f
              fooder Mar 7, 2012 09:35 PM

              That is impressive. I can easily do 35 pieces at Yasuda but the pieces at 15E are considerably bigger in my opinion.

              1. re: fooder
                s
                SomeRandomIdiot Mar 7, 2012 09:51 PM

                I'm just a glutton. A couple of weeks ago I did the seven course tasting menu at Tocqueville then went next door and had 30 pieces at the bar.

                1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
                  f
                  fooder Mar 9, 2012 07:33 AM

                  You didn't seem to eat that much food the one day we sat next to each other at EMP lunch. Wow, that was so long ago now looking back.

                  1. re: fooder
                    s
                    SomeRandomIdiot Mar 9, 2012 08:54 AM

                    I'm limited by time. EMP takes forever with multiple courses, even if you ask them to rush it. I think I had 3 courses that day and it took close to 90 minutes. I generally can get away with taking 60-90 minutes for lunch but I can't sit there for 3 hours.

                    1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
                      Cheeryvisage Mar 9, 2012 10:17 AM

                      lol, amen. I once had such a long 4-course lunch at EMP that by the time I paid the bill, I was hungry again!

                    2. re: fooder
                      f
                      foodwhisperer Mar 9, 2012 12:53 PM

                      Seems people have met on here. How about we all reserve the whole sushi bar at 15 East for a wild sushi dinner. Except those who hate me lol

                      1. re: foodwhisperer
                        f
                        fooder Mar 9, 2012 04:50 PM

                        I tried reserving 5 seats at the sushi bar once and they were very strict with the 3 ppl per reservation policy. Which would make it very hard to coordinate. That could have just been the hostesses though, and if I had spoken to Masa himself it might have been done. But then again, Masa can only serve so many people at once. If you reserve the whole sushi bar, someone is not going to get his full attention.

                        1. re: fooder
                          f
                          foodwhisperer Mar 9, 2012 09:21 PM

                          I have had 4 people at the sushi bar. 5 is a bit too many.

                        2. re: foodwhisperer
                          s
                          SomeRandomIdiot Mar 9, 2012 08:31 PM

                          I like the idea. Please let me know if you really do set something up.

                          1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
                            f
                            foodwhisperer Mar 9, 2012 09:22 PM

                            I do not know anyone here personally, so if someone posted it and everyone somehow figured out a place to meet to discuss it. I could surely arrange for the whole bar.

                    3. re: fooder
                      s
                      sushiman Mar 8, 2012 09:01 AM

                      LOL, really? Smaller pieces at Yasuda. You must have a small mouth, as he sizes them to each customer. REALLY!!!

                      To the original post, if you are going to each sushi, sit at the bar if you are serious. It is NEVER the same at a table.

                      1. re: sushiman
                        f
                        fooder Mar 8, 2012 10:17 AM

                        Yasuda sizing each piece to his customer's mouth may have been the case long ago at the start, but I certainly didn't feel that that was the case during my visits. His pieces were always uniformly small. I mean, I can understand making the pieces even smaller for some patrons, but I doubt he made them larger for big eaters like myself.

                        I also remember that he used to be the only one to do the rice mix, but I doubt that was the case later on in the restaurant's lifetime.

                        1. re: fooder
                          s
                          sushiman Mar 8, 2012 11:08 AM

                          I was being sarcastic.

                  2. re: foodwhisperer
                    f
                    fooder Mar 7, 2012 09:34 PM

                    When we went last year with a non-sushi eating friend they let him order from both the 15E and Tocqueville menus while sitting at the bar with us.
                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/775009

                2. c
                  comiendosiempre Mar 7, 2012 08:27 PM

                  Perfect, thanks. I have a reservation but will ask for those seats. I think the uni will be in order that evening.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: comiendosiempre
                    Cheeryvisage Mar 8, 2012 09:13 AM

                    Make sure to reserve the bar seats early. I recall there was someone on this board who had wanted to eat at the bar for her Valentine's dinner, but didn't call to reserve the bar seats until only a couple of days before. Of course, there was no availability.

                    1. re: Cheeryvisage
                      f
                      foodwhisperer Mar 8, 2012 08:14 PM

                      I;'ve had 2 bad meals at 15 East, sitting at a table. I sat at a table because it was easier for 4 of us to talk. At 15 East I think it is a must to sit at the sushi bar, especially near Masa. The seats on the short end are saved for special customers usually. Those are the best seats at any sushi bar. Since you can watch how skillful the chef is. On another note, Masa's sushi is pretty small in size. His master's pieces, in Japan, are huge. Many places that have 2 pieces of sushi per serving of fish tend to be smaller. I think the older style was bigger pieces.

                      1. re: Cheeryvisage
                        janethepain Mar 9, 2012 06:02 AM

                        That was me, I hadn't even known people reserved the bar seats. Canceled my res so that I'd do it "right" the next time. But there was a looong thread about this same topic, and the definitive answer seems to be yes, sit at the bar if you're ordering sushi.

                        1. re: janethepain
                          Cheeryvisage Mar 9, 2012 07:39 AM

                          Oh, excellent. Glad you got the bar seats this time. Hope you have a great meal!

                    2. c
                      comiendosiempre Mar 9, 2012 06:53 PM

                      Thank you for the feedback and head's up. I called ahead for the sushi bar. I already had a "table" reservation. I switched it and got what was, apparently, the only two seats at the sushi bar until a very late reservation. I am looking very forward to the meal, its a surprise for her. I'm not sure about a formal Omakase, or whether we should just go with the flow and point at various items and ask what the chef recommends. What we do indeed need, after the week we had, is some very strong sake. Thanks, will report back.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: comiendosiempre
                        f
                        foodwhisperer Mar 9, 2012 09:23 PM

                        Masa will ask you if you have any allergies or dislikes or special likes. After that just let him give you what he wants. It will be special. Enjoy.

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