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Kyoto Restaurants review - April 2013

Wife and I came had an 11-day trip to Japan, all in Tokyo and Kyoto. Trying lots of good restaurants was definitely on the agenda. I did a lot of research on websites like chowhound, chuckeats, wanderingepicures, yukari sakamoto, etc.

Below I list our Kyoto places by type (in alpha order); I made a separate post for Tokyo. My prices are from memory. I put an ** by my top-picks or must-do's.
If a restaurant is reviewed extensively elsewhere on the internet, I won't say much more about it. I'll usually provide a link to the review I found most helpful.
In general, food in Kyoto is amazingly good. Its been a region and city of foodies for hundreds of years! There are probably great choices for everything so no need to feel like you're missing out if you can't get a res at a particular place. Your second or third choice is probably just as good as your first choice.

* Bakery. Briant. NW Kyoto.
Across from street, due south from the SW corner of Hirano Shrine. We came across it while cycling up to Kinkakuji Temple. French and Japanese style pastries. Very very good. See pic below.

** Curry Rice. Ryokaku (Gion).
Must try (I think there may be no peer)!
$11/entrée (excellent value). I had the pork katsu curry. This is the best curry rice I have ever had (or probably ever could)!
Its affiliated with the best spice shop in Kyoto (400 years, etc), the spice shop was on our to-do list and the curry rice café was an unexpected bonus.
This curry is just perfect, deep flavors, right amount of heat, thinner consistency like a stew (no lard). The tonkatsu it came with was very good as well. I think the rice was optimized for curry rice, it seemed softer and absorbed more curry. If I lived in Kyoto, I’d come here all the time.
I'll say this is the best food bang-for-the buck we experienced in 11 days in Japan!! See pic below.

* Kaiseki. Giro Giro (or Guillo Guillo).
Great value. I think it was only $35pp. That's pretty incredible.
We sat at a table on the 2nd floor. Food was tasty, fun. Fun atmosphere, especially for kaiseki.
I see some chowhound reviews that dog Giro Giro for not being as good as the top kaiseki places. My view that is a wrong and unfair comparison. Giro Giro is 5-15% of the cost of the top kaiseki in Kyoto, what are you expecting? Its a fun casual kaiseki, I don't think its representing itself as a Maizen or whatever.

** Kaiseki. Hana Kitcho (Gion).
Must try!
We sat at the counter on 1st floor, chose the $220 pp set (happy to pay it).
Very excellent: Food, service, very beautiful dishware (best we saw).
Even though it was $220 pp, it was an excellent value!
Here's a very detailed review:
http://epicures.wordpress.com/2010/05...
These pictures don't even do justice to how pretty the presentations are. See my pics below of the mini-lily pad pond soup and the gold duck dishware.
Maizen was my top choice for top-level kaiseki but that's a tough reservation.

Market. Nishiki Market.
Many tasty nibbles and samples.
The octopus oden-on-a-stick was very good. I'm not sure what its called, I don't think it is takoyaki. You can't miss the stand, its on the south side, at a corner of street, near the Arigutsu shop. Always a long line.

* Tofu Master. Tosuiro.
If you like tofu, you may be interested in seeing its many varieties in a 8 (or so) course meal. We liked it very much and learned a lot.

A few general notes to help first-time visitors.
1. Most places do not do anything different to cater to foreigner customers; its not they are hostile to foreigners or anything. I would definitely not limit myself to English-friendly places. You can work around it and it will be worth it.
2. Making reservations is crucial for top-level places, as early as possible. I used my hotel concierge for most. It is hard to do directly (most don't speak English). If you make a res, please don't be inconsiderate about cancelling. Inconsiderate cancellation by foreigners is making it hard for foreigners to get reservations.
3. At many places, Japanese beer and sake are the only alcohol options. Few have wine and almost no one has wine by the glass. The upside is that there seems to be no markup on the alcohol they do serve.

Apr 20, 2013
tkny123 in Japan

Tokyo Restaurants Review

Wife and I came had an 11-day trip to Japan in April 2013, all in Tokyo and Kyoto. Trying lots of good restaurants was definitely on the agenda. I did a lot of research on websites like chowhound, chuckeats, wanderingepicures, yukari sakamoto, etc.

I have listed my Tokyo places by type (in alpha order by type); I made a separate post for Kyoto. My prices are from memory. I put a ** or * by my top-picks or must-do's.
If a restaurant is reviewed extensively elsewhere on the internet, I won't say much more about it. I'll usually provide a link to the review I found most helpful.
I'm going to do a separate posting for my ramen experience in Tokyo (I tried quite a few).

Curry rice. Moyan.
I read somewhere this was the best curry rice in Tokyo (maybe bento.com?). The curry was way too sweet for me. It doesn't compare at all to Ryokaku in Kyoto. Locals do seem to like it. I got there for the weekend lunch buffet by accident and it was packed with Tokyo locals (we were the only tourists). I guess Tokyo-ites may like their curry rice on the sweet side.

** Depachika. Isetan Shinjuku.
I think this is the best depachika. Great food, reasonable prices, huge selection. You can take your food to the rooftop, which is an oasis and a great place to enjoy your food. To go with your rooftop dining, you can buy sake or wine (a prosecco is a solid value at Yen 2200), or beer from outside. You need to find or bring your own cups.

Depachika. Takashimaya Shinjuku.
This is a very nice depachika but I liked Isetan better. I think part of the high ranking for this one is because of its foreign "brand-name" stalls (like Kayser boulangerie), which I didn't care about.

** Sushi, Top-level. Sushiso Masa.
Fanatastic hi-level sushi!! I'll just link to the ChuckEats ultra-detailed review that got me interested in it.
http://www.chuckeats.com/2009/02/11/sushiso-masa-nishiazabu-tokyo-nirvana/

The fish was top quality, great variety. Fun to watch the master's knifework. Some great dishware.

Our set course was about $220 pp. We had a fair amount of sake and beer and the cost was negligible. One great thing about this place is that the Master Chef himself is very friendly and makes it an overall enjoyable experience, even for non-Japanese. In contrast, some/many master "master-level" restaurants seem to be no fun at all (see reviews of Jiro).

I wanted to try Sawada or Saito (I think they are $400 pp courses) but I couldn't get a res. I think $220 pp is a very fair price (a good value actually) for such an amazing meal. I'd rather spend $220pp at Sushiso Masa than I think any place in NYC that I can think of.

Sushi, Tsukiji. Sushi Dai Bekkan
I really don’t understand why people wait 2-4 hours in line for Dai and Daiwa. I’d rather spend a bit more and go to lunch at a top-level sushi place like Saito. Could someone compare the sushi at Dai or Daiwa to that of a Saito, Sawada or Sushiso Masa? I’m guessing there is no comparison (at least the dinner menu). Maybe its closer vs the lunch menus at the top places?

We bought a box of uni from a vendor inside the main market for $21 and ate it standing among the parked bicycles near the shrine just outside the East exit. It was great! I would recommend just buying a lot of sushi direct from the vendors and eating it somewhere; the sushi looked great.

We went to Dai Bekkan because it was recommended on Yukari Sakamoto's website (useful website). It is not in the main 6-block grouping. It was ok. Filled with Japanese people. If it wasn't in Tsukiji, it wouldn't rate a mention. The color of the banner has changed from that on Yukari's website (think dark blue now) but you can recognize the characters. Also, the store owners there can point you it if you show them the pic.

* Tempura Master. Mikawa Roppongi.
The Zezankyo location is rated higher (the actual master is there) but we couldn't get a res at that location. I love tempura so I was curious to see what top-level tempura is like. It was very nice and I'm glad I did it. Many reviews out there.

* Tonkatsu Master. Maisen.
Fantastic! There are 3-4 grade of pork. I got the [Otoika] Kurabota set, rosu (loin). I wanted to get the top grade but I couldn't tell if the X-set was highest grade or not. In any case, what I was fantastic. I sat at the counter with a view right into the kitchen. Interesting how it is deep-fried in a lower temperature oil. There was no sizzle or smoke.
Many reviews out there. Here's a good one:
http://www.tinyurbankitchen.com/2011/...

A few general notes to help first-time visitors.
1. Most places do not do anything different to cater to foreigner customers; its not they are hostile to foreigners or anything. I would definitely not limit myself to English-friendly places. You can work around it and it will be worth it.
2. Making reservations is crucial for top-level places, as early as possible. I used my hotel concierge for most. It is hard to do directly (most don't speak English). If you make a res, please don't be inconsiderate about cancelling. Inconsiderate cancellation by foreigners is making it hard for foreigners to get reservations.
3. At many places, Japanese beer and sake are the only alcohol options. Few have wine and almost no one has wine by the glass. The upside is that there seems to be no markup on the alcohol they do serve.
4. For location-based searching for restaurants when you are in Tokyo, I found bento.com to be quite useful.

Apr 20, 2013
tkny123 in Japan

Good Flushing Chinese with a lot of people

Went to Spicy Road bc of the big review above and the nice pics. Got the Xinjiang Style Sautéed Sliced Beef. Sorry but it was terrible. Beef belly needs to be trimmed properly and here it is not. The sliced beef belly comes with stringy gristle that is not edible. Its not easy trim on the plate using chopsticks. If you want beef belly, have it a Korean BBQ where it is always trimmed properly. I'll probably try Spicy Road one more time but less motivated now.

One positive is that you can park in the lot around the corner, in between the red lines. There's no signs that I saw but I had a hunch and asked the waitstaff. The lot is shared the neighboring BBQ restaurant.

Dec 01, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Sensation Neo Shanghai - Great Chinese in Williamsburg!

Speed bump. Had a lunch special there a few weeks ago (slow to post). Main dish was good but the egg drop soup was terrible. It looked and tasted like an egg dropped in water and stirred up. I don;t know if there was chef change or a day off or what.

Dec 01, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

The Pines

2nd visit. Bit of a reality check.
Went on Friday around 9 pm. Crowded w a fashiony crowd, which I'll say is a good thing. Fun vibe, chef and staff seemed to be enjoying themselves too.

Food-wise, apps great again.
Lettuce w guanciale, dill, egg yolk (made into a light cream in the shape of a yolk), $12. Light, tasty.
Sweet potato w buttermilk, mini-anchovy instead of tobiko, $14. Very tasty.

Entrees - not as good as the apps or other entrees we've had
Pici w trotter ragu, $18. Wife said pasta was overworked so gummy and heavy. She's eaten at quite a few of Milan's best restos. Sauce was ok.
Tilefish w maitake, $26. Fish was salty and kind of fishy. Maitake was too salty.

Will return for more.

Oct 27, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

The Pines

Pan: I don't think there is a big line. Call them or try it.
egit: Funny to take a pic of the space that is washed out and in bright daylight. Think the space was intended to be seen at night, its dark & atmospheric.

Article does mention "funky" wines. Wife's dolcetto was fine. I got the grenache, it was very "funky", the server recognized that and offered to swap it. I stuck it out. I won't be getting that grenache again but others may like it. I respect that they'll take chances with their wine list.

Oct 24, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Sensation Neo Shanghai - Great Chinese in Williamsburg!

Thanks Silverjay for understanding my humble aspiration!
I look forward to trying Yi Lan Halal.

Oct 24, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Sensation Neo Shanghai - Great Chinese in Williamsburg!

AubWah: pls check my posts. I clearly don't work there.
chompchomp: What's a better Chinese resto within the same delivery radius?
BrickPM: This is a local Chinese takeout kind of place. No one should be looking for fish head or tripe at a place like that.
scoopG: I've eaten at many many places in all 3 Chinatowns. Ex's of places that are hyped on CH but I find to be "ok" are Noodle Village and that I think are overrated are the Xian food court in basement of the Flushing mini-mall, NY Noodletown, Spicy & Tasty. I'm not as good as a lot of people on CH at writing about the particulars. Let me be clear, when I say "2+ cuts above", I am not saying it is EMP in Chinese form. I am saying its Kung Pao Chicken tastes much better than all the other crappy Kung Pao Chicken on offer all thru-out NYC by places that could deliver to your home. Prob bc their chicken tastes like chicken, the sauce is somehow more than just soy + corn starch, I can't articulate why I feel that.
The lunch special is $7.50 guys. Let's be real. If you're in the hood and feel like Chinese, take a chance with the $7.50. Not saying its worth a trip from Manhattan just for it. But I don't think I have found any Chinese place in Brooklyn or Queens to be worth a trip from Manhattan.

Oct 23, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Sensation Neo Shanghai - Great Chinese in Williamsburg!

The food is excellent.

I've taken out from here on multiple occasions. The food is clearly 2+ cuts above any other Chinese restaurant not in a Chinatown. It is also better than any of the few restos I've tried lately in the Chinatowns on Canal St, in Sunset Park or in Flushing (generally after + reviews on CH). But I've not really tried too hard in those areas and the efforts I have made haven't been so rewarding.

There is a real chef back there, which I think is very rare at a Chinese resto. The guy must have some training and skills. I think the names of the dishes and basic recipes are the ones people are used to. But the execution is surprisingly different and better. The hot & sour soup is a good example (free with lunch special).

I've never eaten in, and have never seen too many people eating in. Decor is ok, darker but clean. Just seems like not too many people eat in at Chinese restaurants so much any more (outside of the Chinatowns). Lunch special is a crazy good value, weekends too!

There are a ton of detailed reviews on Yelp. Thought I would kick off a thread on CH.
Give it a try, maybe eat in too.

I have generally found Chinese in Manhattan and Brooklyn (outside of Chinatowns) to be terrible and never worth repeating.

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Sensation Neo Shanghai Cuisine
208 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Oct 21, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

The Pines

Ate on Thursday night.
Great restaurant! Plan to go back plenty.
Delicious food, great value, nice servers, plenty of atmosphere that works. Menu is interesting, highlights unusual items that turn out great (cherry husk? delish). Pretty plating is an unexpected bonus. Backyard space looks nice too (cold & rainy when I went). Neighborhood feels totally remote but is actually only an avenue away from Park Slope.

We had jicama and the headcheese (delish) to start. Had geoduck, pork shoulder (could not be cooked more perfectly, slow roast 24 hours or something), and the apple dish. All great, interesting, wondering what they did it or how they did it.

We spent $50 pp before tax & tip; cannot beat that; in NYC $80 pp for crap is normal. If you are seeking a good meal somewhere in Brooklyn, this is a top contender. I guess the chef was the chef at Masten Lake, which I understand people liked and I meant to go but never did.

Wife likens it to Isa when it first opened. I think the food is much better here.
Perfect place for a date. Worth a trip from Manhattan.

Oct 21, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Good eats near Brooklyn's American Opera Project

If you have a car or willing to walk some for good to really good food: The Pines, Franny's, and R&D606 (in order). More immediate vicinity, food is a notch down but ok: Walter Foods, General Greene, ici.

Oct 20, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Littleneck (Gowanus)

I've never been to Littleneck and these kind of mixed reviews haven't created any real urge to try. But the owners of Littleneck have opened The Pines next door, with a head chef named Angelo from Masten Lake (which had a mini-cult on CH). This is my review & plug for The Pines.

The Pines - Its very good food!!
Great restaurant! Plan to go back plenty.
Delicious food, great value, nice servers, plenty of atmosphere that works. Menu is interesting, highlights unusual items that turn out great (cherry husk? delish). Pretty plating is an unexpected bonus (looks kind of like the style of plating at Corton). Backyard space looks nice too (cold & rainy when I went). Neighborhood feels totally remote but is actually only an avenue away from Park Slope.

We had jicama and the headcheese (delish) to start. Had geoduck, pork shoulder (could not be cooked more perfectly, slow roast 24 hours or something), and the apple dish. All great, interesting, wondering what they did it or how they did it. Have to try the pastas next bc CHers loved them at Masten and they seem to be the same pastas. I'll say the service was very good & nice (since there are complaints about service at Littleneck and Masten).

We spent $50 pp before tax & tip; cannot beat that; in NYC $80 pp for crap is normal. If you are seeking a good meal somewhere in Brooklyn, this is a top contender. I guess the chef was the chef at Masten Lake, which I understand people liked and I meant to go but never did.

Wife likens it to Isa when it first opened. I think the food is much better here.
Perfect place for a date. Worth a trip from Manhattan.

If you are a regular at Franny's or al di La in the neighborhood, you should definitely try this place. The decor and overall feel of Pines is much more "specific" (salvage chic) but the food is worth it, as good or better in taste and prob more unique, quirky (in a good way).

Oct 20, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Coupla reviews: The Pines (Awesome!), R&D 606, Ganso

OP here.
I did some reading on The Pines and Masten Lake. Its next door to Littleneck, whose owners opened The Pines. Chef Angelo worked at Lupa and Roberta's before Masten. Some / much of the menu is brought over from Masten.
There were complaints about service at Masten Lake and are at Littleneck. I've never been to either but I'll take the comments at face value. When I went to the Pines, the service was very nice & good.
Dear owners & staff of The Pines: You guys could make The Pines a real, durable winner and let the chef do his thing. Please execute and get the job done on things like service (which as I said was already very good on my first try).

Oct 20, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Ganso

Ganso
I need this place to succeed (I love ramen). Have Salat's cookbook, wife and I were excited to try. Overall, ok. Really hope they can tweak it up. Japanese fried chicken was great. Gyoza ok, maybe a bit too meaty and so not guite cooked and hot. Spicy miso ramen: noodles nice and toothsome, broth kind of not so tasty. Still rec people go and try. I plan to go and try more of the dishes.

While I'm here, allow me to recommend my new "find" in Brooklyn:

The Pines.
Its in Gowanus, not too far from Barclays Center & Park Slope.
Great restaurant! Plan to go back plenty.
Delicious food, great value, nice servers, plenty of atmosphere that works. Menu is interesting, highlights unusual items that turn out great (cherry husk? delish). Pretty plating is an unexpected bonus (looks kind of like the style of plating at Corton). Backyard space looks nice too (cold & rainy when I went). Neighborhood feels totally remote but is actually only an avenue away from Park Slope.

We had jicama and the headcheese (delish) to start. Had geoduck, pork shoulder (could not be cooked more perfectly, slow roast 24 hours or something), and the apple dish. All great, interesting, makes you wonder what they did it or how they did it.

We spent $50 pp before tax & tip; cannot beat that; in NYC $80 pp for crap is normal. If you are seeking a good meal somewhere in Brooklyn, this is a top contender. I guess the chef was the chef at Masten Lake, which I understand people liked and I meant to go but never did. There were complaints about service at Masten Lake (and at Littleneck, whose owners opened The Pines), but service was very nice & good when we went.

Wife likens it to Isa when it first opened. I think the food is much better here.
Perfect place for a date. Worth a trip from Manhattan.

Oct 20, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Coupla reviews: The Pines (Awesome!), R&D 606, Ganso

The Pines
Great restaurant! Plan to go back plenty.
Delicious food, great value, nice servers, plenty of atmosphere that works. Menu is interesting, highlights unusual items that turn out great (cherry husk? delish). Pretty plating is an unexpected bonus (looks kind of like the style of plating at Corton). Backyard space looks nice too (cold & rainy when I went). Neighborhood feels totally remote but is actually only an avenue away from Park Slope.

We had jicama and the headcheese (delish) to start. Had geoduck, pork shoulder (could not be cooked more perfectly, slow roast 24 hours or something), and the apple dish. All great, interesting, wondering what they did it or how they did it.

We spent $50 pp before tax & tip; cannot beat that; in NYC $80 pp for crap is normal. If you are seeking a good meal somewhere in Brooklyn, this is a top contender. I guess the chef was the chef at Masten Lake, which I understand people liked and I meant to go but never did.

Wife likens it to Isa when it first opened. I think the food is much better here.
Perfect place for a date. Worth a trip from Manhattan.

R&D 606
Very nice restaurant. Food, service, atmosphere all pretty nice. But I'm too caught up with The Pines to write more.

Ganso
I need this place to succeed (I love ramen). Have Salat's cookbook, wife and I were excited to try. Overall, ok. Really hope they can tweak it up. Japanese fried chicken was great. Gyoza ok, maybe a bit too meaty and so not guite cooked and hot. Spicy miso ramen: noodles nice and toothsome, broth kind of not so tasty. Still rec people go and try. I plan to go and try more of the dishes.

Oct 18, 2012
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Kin Shop in West Village - just opened

Re-posting this to the more active thread.

Terrible food. Nice server.

Apps.
Spicy Duck Laab Salad. Ok I guess.
Squid Ink and Hot Sesame Oil Soup. I like this kind of thing, but just no real reason to order this.

Entrees
Massaman: Braised Goat. Fatty no flavor. Curry too sweet, jumbled.
Grilled Prawns. Blah. $4 each is silly.
Fried Brussel Sprouts. Over-fried. Can do this at home.
Jasmine Rice. Way too dry. Serving rice this bad is unforgiveable.

Wine
Cheverny Sauv Blanc. Its a decent table wine, $15/bottle retail I buy for home. At $10/glass, the markup seems a lot higher than I thought was normal.

We went to Perilla when it first opened a bunch of times and liked it. I don't know what happened here. They'll prob have to try a full reboot eventually.

For Thai in NY, I'll stick with Lotus of Siam and wait to try Pok Pok. Think Sripraphai is way over-rated on CH. Yet to try Zaab and other contenders.

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Kin Shop
469 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Jan 22, 2012
tkny123 in Manhattan

Kin Shop - A wonderful neighborhood restaurant

20 times in 1 year? What other Thai restos do you like?
The Goat gets a lot of props. I have no idea why.

I am no expert on wine markups. But I thought 2-2.5x WHOLESALE price is a common markup. If a bottle is $18 retail at a wine shop, it must be a lot less at wholesale to the wine shop. Let's assume its $10 wholesale and Kin Shop buys its wine at wholesale. Then Kin Shop's revenue is $45/bottle ($10 * 4.5 glasses), a 4.5x markup. If I am wrong somewhere, pls let me know, I'm curious.

In contrast, I think the wines by the glass at Locanda Verde must be a much lower markup bc they always taste fantastic and only cost at $12-14/glass ($60/bottle). If I could buy their bottles at retail for only $20/bottle (if 3x markup), I'd buy cases non-stop, no q's asked!!

Jan 22, 2012
tkny123 in Manhattan

CUT 'Wagyu' Rib Eye

Had a business dinner there. Have business dinners at hi-end steak places frequently (esp in NYC). CUT in Bev Hills serves great food. I was very surprised (since I thought Puck was not really focused on "great food" anymore) and pretty impressed.

Had the SRF American Wagyu sirloin, med rare. I'll admit I am no expert. All the posters who say Wagyu / Kobe should not be eaten in steak form sound like they have a much more educated opinion that I do. All I know is that it was prob the best steak I ever had. I eat plenty of expensive steaks, I usually barely even notice what I am eating. I noticed a lot about this steak. Great texture, flavor etc. Everyone in large group who ordered it pretty much agreed. Raved about it to friends after.

A number of the apps and sides also a tall step above usual steakhouse fare.
Fave side ever at a steakhouse is the Wild Field Mushrooms w Shishito Peppers. The shishitos are tastier than any I've had at Japanese restos.

Crab & shrimps cocktails, Tuna tartare also good.

Very loud room. Service is pretty good.

If you're on an expense account and want steak in LA, I'd go here and not sure there's even a real contender. If not an expense account, "value" is very subjective; one could easily say "That was good but not "$150 / person good"."

For reference, in NYC I like steaks at Sparks and Del Friscos. LIke overall meals at BLT Steak, Craftsteak, BLT Prime (steaks are pretty good, sides are above avg). Don't like Lugars, Quality Meats, Smith & Wollensky. In chains, I think Ruth's Chris is not too bad.

PS. After my great meal at CUT, got interested in trying more Puck restos. Was at Maui Four Seasons and ate at both Spago and DUO (had the seafood buffet). Food was very meh, price way hi, horrible value. Nice view but you're seeing that view all day anyways from the beach or pool. Wouldn't bother eating there again.

Jan 22, 2012
tkny123 in Los Angeles Area

Kin Shop - A wonderful neighborhood restaurant

Terrible food. Nice server.

Apps.
Spicy Duck Laab Salad. Ok I guess.
Squid Ink and Hot Sesame Oil Soup. I like this kind of thing, but just no real reason to order this.

Entrees
Massaman: Braised Goat. Fatty no flavor. Curry too sweet, jumbled.
Grilled Prawns. Blah. $4 each is silly.
Fried Brussel Sprouts. Over-fried. Can do this at home.
Jasmine Rice. Way too dry. Serving rice this bad is unforgiveable.

Wine
Cheverny Sauv Blanc. Its a decent table wine, $15/bottle retail I buy for home. At $10/glass, the markup seems a lot higher than I thought was normal.

We went to Perilla when it first opened a bunch of times and liked it. I don't know what happened here. They'll prob have to try a full reboot eventually.

For Thai in NY, I'll stick with Lotus of Siam and wait to try Pok Pok. Think Sripraphai is way over-rated on CH. Yet to try Zaab and other contenders.

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Kin Shop
469 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Jan 21, 2012
tkny123 in Manhattan

1or8 is def a top Brooklyn resto, pricey end

Went for omakase twice last week. Right now, really lIke the ika and a cold mousse-like topping he makes out of the mustard of a lobster's head (forget which fish it was on).

Hi Sushiman, I see from your posts you really like your sushi. Any top picks for sushi in LA? Are any of the super-pricey omakases worth it? I've tried Sasabune in LA (I liked it but I see many hate it for alleged pre-slicing etc) and Sushi-Gen (good fish, great value).

Oct 10, 2011
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

1or8 is def a top Brooklyn resto, pricey end

Thx for agreeing w my 1st post on chowhound! Thx for the recs, they look good, hope they carry on the best aspects of their lineage.

Sep 28, 2011
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

1or8 is def a top Brooklyn resto, pricey end

We like to sit and the sushi bar and order the omakase (I think the $70 pp kind).
The sushi is not strictly traditional in style but not silly. The quality is excellent: fresh obviously, each fish actually tastes like its supposed to. Esp good are uni, ameabi, some kind of little mackerel. No fish was bad. Chefs are skilled yet friendly.

We've only tried some of the non-sushi items. Excellent apps are the dumplings, hamachi and octopus ceviche. Entrees: Duck Two-Ways is excellent; grilled fish too. Desserts are very good, and made in- house, which is unusual. House cocktails are good.

Decor is great. Really like the Corian sushi bar with no little glass fridge.
Service is skilled.

What's not so hot? The ramen on the late-night only menu. Soup base tastes oily, pork is all fat, noodles seem to be the mass-manufactured kind. Hope they start over on this dish.

Overall, we think its (1) our fave resto in Brooklyn overall, (2) def should be in any Top 5 of Brooklyn for food, and (3) is a very legit alternative to sushi-focused sushi in Downtown Manhattan (we go to Ushi and 15 East). A good place to take visitors to Brooklyn.

Costs about $100 pp. Could easily be lower, or higher.

For reference, our other fave restos in Brooklyn, strictly on the basis of food and in order of freq, are: Frannys, Fonda, Marlow & Sons, Prime Meats, and Frankies 457. Also like Dressler but its been a while.

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1 or 8
66 S 2nd St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Sep 23, 2011
tkny123 in Outer Boroughs

Hello CVille Hounders! [moved from Southeast]

ok, thx for the color to carolinadawg and mojoeater.

Mar 11, 2010
tkny123 in Mid-Atlantic

Hello CVille Hounders! [moved from Southeast]

Hi. Can anyone confirm if Peter Chang is still the chef at Taste of China on Albermarle as of March 10, 2010? We're thinking of taking a drive down there and don't want it to be for naught. Tried calling the restaurant but its hard to get through. Thanks.

Mar 10, 2010
tkny123 in Mid-Atlantic