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Great dining spots in NYC w no signs outside building!!?? Why?

UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 04:37 AM

I just took note of a few places I love but never noticed a sign outside with their name on it. I will start the list: Soto, Hirohisa, Kyo ya. Why no sign? From the looks of my list, it seems to be a Japanese thing? Add to the list if you know of others.

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  1. coasts RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 05:05 AM

    Hakkasan was like that at first, but I believe they added some signage. i guess it gives patrons a sense that they're in the know.

    1. j
      jewelin RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 06:29 AM

      Bohemian, behind the butchers on Great Jones St. Again, Japanese. Decibel, a Japanese basement joint, does have a sign but it's virtually invisible from street level.

      1. t
        tex.s.toast RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 09:09 AM

        I noticed this on a recent trip to Toronto also - not exclusively (or even predominantly) on Japanese places.

        What about places like Acme, where the sign is totally unreflective of the actual restaurant.

        1. p
          Pookipichu RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 09:22 AM


          1. Chinon00 RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 09:27 AM

            Friends who travel to the Far East say that this is common there. You just know by the address where the restaurant is. Korean place I went to w/ a friend years ago in Philly was the same. It was just a door w/ a number. Inside there were tables and chairs and no English.

            1. Motosport RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 09:29 AM

              Back in the day to find Chumley's you went thru an unmarked door at Bedford and Barrow St and thru a courtyard. It always impressed my dates. The place was always crowded.
              I recently went to Double Windsor in Park Slope. It's a bar/restaurant with excellent food. The place was packed on a Wednesday evening. No sign at all.

              1. Ttrockwood RE: UES Mayor Nov 21, 2013 01:39 PM

                I think its also an attempt towards creating an air of "exclusivity" similar to how esquina's restaurant is hidden downstairs, or any number of clubs/lounges with a blank door and just a bouncer. Also a number of the speakeasy cocktail bars- i walked by middle branch twice before noticing the "MB" outside.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Ttrockwood
                  Motosport RE: Ttrockwood Nov 22, 2013 06:03 AM

                  Funny. MB is in my hood. After walking by a dozen times wondering WTH I went in. Nice crowd and worth a visit.

                  1. re: Motosport
                    Ttrockwood RE: Motosport Nov 22, 2013 02:17 PM

                    Then we're neighbors! I really liked it too, I need to go back actually...

                2. m
                  mushroomaffairs RE: UES Mayor Nov 23, 2013 06:32 AM

                  Pulqueria never had one, does this place still exist? Locande Vini e Oili has a drugstore sign instead the actual name.

                  1. ellenost RE: UES Mayor Nov 23, 2013 02:33 PM

                    No sign outside of Momofuku Ko, only a peach on the door.

                    1. Ziggy41 RE: UES Mayor Nov 23, 2013 03:43 PM

                      2 places come to mind.

                      Zenkichi in Williamsburg - This is the door... http://www.spearmintkitchen.com/wp-co...

                      Sakagura - Inside an office building. I know there are others inside office buildings (HIT Korean is another one) but this one took me by surprise since I didnt do my homework so had no idea

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