HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
What's your latest food quest?

Best Octopus in Manhattan?

Caucus Mar 11, 2012 05:25 AM

Best place to get octopus in Manhattan?

  1. Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. t
    tex.s.toast Mar 11, 2012 07:24 AM

    I love me some octopus - rubirosa's octopus appetizer is really really exceptional - mache, almonds, tomatoes and chopped giarinerra. one time i had it the octopus was cooked just a hair past perfection, but its been my favorite octopus dish of the last year, for sure.

    i have also really enjoyed two brooklyn octopi - roberta's with black garlic, watermelon, and sea beans (may not have watermelon in non-summer versions) and thistle hill tavern's version with a deconstructed romesco sauce (more tomatoes and almonds, like rubirosa's) is also pretty great.

    i may be a bad judge since i love pretty much all octopus so long as they arent cooked into toughness (which is why i never get the popularity of sushi octopus, if i wanted to chew a piece of rubber id rather not pay 5 bucks to do it) but these are some of my faves.

    235 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012

    1. melpy Mar 11, 2012 07:51 AM

      Marea has a two great octopi dishes. One app and one pasta and both are delicious.

      240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

      1 Reply
      1. re: melpy
        fm1963 Mar 11, 2012 04:30 PM

        2nd Marea. Both dishes are delicious.

      2. c
        crsin Mar 11, 2012 07:58 AM

        I'm admittedly inexperienced with octopus--it's not something I usually order--but I can attest to the deliciousness of Babbo's octopus appetizer. It's awesome.

        110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

        1 Reply
        1. re: crsin
          Charles Yu Mar 11, 2012 02:33 PM

          The ones that I had were 'WAY OVER-CHARRED', but the kitchen simply did not care and released the dish anyways!! No wonder Michelin removed their star!!

        2. k
          kathryn Mar 11, 2012 08:42 AM

          La Mar (ceviche)

          See also:

          110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

          128 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

          402 West 43rd Street, New York, NY 10036

          38 8th Avenue, New York, NY 10003

          La Mar
          11 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10010

          2 Replies
          1. re: kathryn
            alkonost Sep 12, 2012 09:55 PM

            Good call on Pylos, I haven't been there in a long time but I remember the octopus. I should go back soon.

            1. re: kathryn
              kathryn Sep 13, 2012 07:58 AM

              To add onto my previous post: the octopus "carpaccio" at Txikito.

            2. r
              RCC Mar 11, 2012 08:50 AM

              Always liked the braised octopus dish at Hearth.

              Nowadays, my go to octopus dish is the one at Riverpark. Baby octopus with clams and chorizo.


              403 East 12th Street, New York, NY 10009

              450 E 29th St, New York, NY 10016

              1. t
                thegforceny Mar 11, 2012 04:10 PM

                I like greek style at Kellari and Avra.

                John Dory

                141 East 48th Street, New York, NY 10017

                Kellari Taverna
                19 W. 44th Street, New York, NY 10036

                The John Dory Oyster Bar
                1196 Broadway, New York, NY 10001

                1 Reply
                1. re: thegforceny
                  madoc Nov 13, 2013 12:02 PM

                  Enthusiastiac second for Avra's version.

                2. n
                  nmprisons Mar 11, 2012 07:41 PM

                  Big fan of the one at Craft.

                  43 E. 19th St., New York, NY 10003

                  1. linguafood Mar 12, 2012 09:07 AM

                    Had fab octopus appetizer at Caffe Falai. Perfectly charred on the outside and about the most tender inside I have ever had. Massive portion, too, like most of their dishes.

                    Caffe Falai
                    265 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012

                    1. f
                      foodwhisperer Mar 12, 2012 11:48 AM

                      the octopus at 15 East is amazing

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

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: foodwhisperer
                        _emilie_ Sep 6, 2012 02:25 PM

                        Yes! Even without the incredible sushi, one could go there just for the octopus appetizer and leave happy.

                      2. f
                        fm1963 Mar 30, 2012 08:40 AM

                        The new octopus prep at Lincoln is great - grilled octopus, crispy potatoes, and tapenade. I liked it even better than the previous braised version.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: fm1963
                          GyroBall Mar 30, 2012 06:07 PM

                          John Dory is the best I've had in Manhattan. Amazing. Il Buco is #2.

                          1. re: GyroBall
                            _emilie_ Sep 6, 2012 02:25 PM

                            I did have a really excellent special once at Il Buco that was a spicy tomato-based pasta with octopus. Apart from 15 East, that's probably the most memorable octopus dish I've had in town. When they do it grilled as an app, its still good, but nothing like that pasta.

                        2. k
                          keving Mar 30, 2012 06:54 PM

                          Periyali has a delicious version and bar stuzzi also has a good appetizer version!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: keving
                            trixareforkids Sep 6, 2012 02:23 PM

                            i think this place closed

                            1. re: keving
                              financialdistrictresident Mar 25, 2014 04:58 PM

                              Second Periyali.

                              Periyali is NOT closed.

                              One of my favorite Greek restaurants. Delicious and consistent. Not a scene or trendy.

                              Just went recently and had their grilled octopus, etc. It remains the best I've had outside of Astoria.

                              I don't care for Pylos grilled octopus with the balsamic syrup. That said, its been awhile since I've been to Pylos so maybe it's different now.

                            2. k
                              kitchenmc Mar 31, 2012 04:31 PM

                              I've always enjoyed Milos for octopus...although I haven't been in a while and it is expensive. But, it has always been outstanding. Here's how they describe it: "Sushi-quality Mediterranean octopus, charcoal-broiled, served with revythada from Cerigo Island. $27.25"

                              1. c
                                Caucus Sep 5, 2012 07:14 PM

                                Felidia has a great octopus dish.

                                1. j
                                  Jez Sep 6, 2012 02:18 AM

                                  I'm not a huge fan of octopus, but how they served it at Le Bernardin was amazing. Perfectly charred outside and tender inside with a flavor that wasn't overpowering, this was octopus that towered above anything I have had in 7 trips to Greece in the last ten years.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: Jez
                                    Michael K Dec 16, 2012 08:47 AM

                                    I agree Le Bernardin's was the best I have ever had. They boil it for 5-6 hours, then it is marinated in preserved lemons over night and then it is charred "a la plancha" and served with Green Olive and Black Garlic Emulsion, Sundried Tomato Sauce Vierge

                                    1. re: Michael K
                                      calf Dec 16, 2012 07:35 PM

                                      I don't know anything about cooking octopus, but how does boiling affect its natural flavor, if any?

                                      1. re: Michael K
                                        deprofundis Dec 16, 2012 10:54 PM

                                        +1, the octopus at Le Bernardin is unbelievable. Photo attached.

                                    2. MWinston Sep 6, 2012 02:43 PM

                                      The octopus dish I had at Prima the other day was spectacular. http://www.foodspotting.com/reviews/2...

                                      1. s
                                        skgchow Sep 11, 2012 11:18 AM

                                        Boulud Sud has a nice octopus appetizer "a la plancha." Marea's octupus app and fusilli pasta that have already been mentioned are fantastic as well. I dream about all 3 of these dishes

                                        1. b
                                          BLover33 Sep 12, 2012 08:13 PM

                                          I think I've tried the octopus at 80% of the below suggestions! I am a huge octopus lover. If you like it very charred and well done I would say the best is Del Anima. Second best that is super tender and super flavorful is Kyclades in Astoria. Many named are very good but those are the two best IMO.

                                          1. r
                                            Radhish Sep 12, 2012 08:24 PM

                                            I second rcc. The appetizer at riverpark, with clams, is really interesting and moves away from the tomatoes+ type dressing. And once I really had the entire baby octupus on my dish, head tentacles and all . . . Very cute.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Radhish
                                              RCC Sep 13, 2012 07:44 AM

                                              +1 on the Riverpark's Octopus with Clams appetizer.

                                            2. loratliff Sep 13, 2012 06:44 AM

                                              The Breslin has a delicious crispy octopus right now, served with red chili jam and pickled watermelon rind. I've had it twice—perfect both times.

                                              1. s
                                                sushiman Sep 13, 2012 08:06 AM

                                                Sip Sak

                                                1. j
                                                  jester99 Sep 13, 2012 08:32 AM

                                                  motorino has a great octopus starter

                                                  1. _emilie_ Jun 13, 2013 06:39 PM

                                                    Maybe not the "best of the best" but I have really been loving the baby octopus specials they've been doing at Lil Frankies and Sauce (same dish). Great flavor and very tender. It's one of the things I refuse to share when I get it.

                                                    1. d
                                                      Dave Feldman Jun 13, 2013 10:20 PM

                                                      I had not been to Molyvos in many years and went with low expectations. The classic grilled octopus appetizer was superb.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: Dave Feldman
                                                        foodwhisperer Jun 14, 2013 01:28 PM

                                                        I had octopus ragu over pasta at Marea recently and it was fantastic. I also had an octopus sauce like a bolognese sauce
                                                        at Louro which was very good. The octopus at 15 East is best Japanese style octopus I've had.

                                                        1. re: foodwhisperer
                                                          sushiman Jun 15, 2013 02:10 PM

                                                          Had it last night, with a little sea salt. Yummmm.

                                                      2. b
                                                        budgetrick Jun 14, 2013 05:44 PM

                                                        I will spend the rest of my life wondering how the other appetizers are at Bocca de Bacco on 9th Ave.in Hells' Kitchen. The fact is, I will ALWAYS order their octopus. It's the best I've ever had, and I've had my share. Probably had your share, too ...

                                                        1. l
                                                          Lacrosse_Gastronomic Nov 12, 2013 12:32 PM

                                                          The tandoori octopus at Junoon is amazing.

                                                          1. s
                                                            Shichman Nov 12, 2013 01:52 PM

                                                            Best i've had in Manhattan is either Le Bernardin or Marea's version with pasta. Both are exceptional.

                                                            1. zeeEats Nov 13, 2013 08:22 AM

                                                              L'Artusi - charred octopus with fingerlings, olives, chili and pancetta
                                                              Dell'Anima - charred octopus with rice beans and chorizo
                                                              Marea - octopus starter and octopus bone marrow fusili
                                                              Jungsik - octopus with ssamjang
                                                              Piora - barbecued octopus

                                                              1. j
                                                                jilkat25 Nov 13, 2013 12:39 PM

                                                                Octopus bolognese (strozzapreti) at Marea was the best dish we had there. (Well, along with the crudo with the caviar, omfg!)

                                                                I remember saying to my son as I tasted the octopus app at Babbo, "I could live on this!"

                                                                Jungsik octopus also stellar!! (As was everythiing there!!)

                                                                Didn't have octopus at Le Bernardin but did have the Merluza with calamari. Not very good. I think the chef had left the kitchen by that time (11 pm-ish) and had left the dishwashers in charge...

                                                                1. j
                                                                  Jorel Dec 4, 2013 02:58 PM

                                                                  I have to pile on to the recommendations for 15 East, dell'anima, Babbo and Marea and add one, with a huge caveat: Pearl & Ash. The first time I tried it, it was my all-time favorite octo dish. The next two times, it was great. The last time, it was leagues below the others on this list.

                                                                  Morini's version is also nice. L'Apicio's is good, too, though I like dell'anima's better.

                                                                  And, Rubirosa is also nice, though, to me, not in the same category as those above.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: Jorel
                                                                    deprofundis Dec 4, 2013 03:15 PM

                                                                    How'd you escape Krypton, Jor-el?

                                                                  2. m
                                                                    monab Dec 6, 2013 02:39 PM

                                                                    I would add two:
                                                                    Frankie's Spuntino

                                                                    Both are very simply done, but delicious.

                                                                    Show Hidden Posts