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439 3rd Ave. (30th St.) Send to Phone
Kips Bay goes global with an izakaya courtesy of chef John McCarthy.

Dinner Wed.-Sun.

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Oka, New York, NY

Oka Restaurant Review

About the restaurant and décor: This izakaya by chef John McCarthy, formerly of wd-50 and presently of The Crimson Sparrow, puts a New York City spin on the traditional casual style of Japanese dining that does not usually feature sushi. A glass and whitewashed brick exterior and a streamlined interior characterized by dark wood tables, low level ambient wall lighting and counter seating juxtapose natural and modern elements.

Likes: Plates such as the fried maitake mushrooms were simply but artfully presented.
Dislikes: The emphasis on Japanese spirits notwithstanding, the wines by the glass list could offer more choices given the global influences on the classic Japanese menu.

Food & Drinks: The menu of creative small plates reveals global influences on classic izakaya fare. Grilled squid with black garlic oil is tender and moist. Fried maitake mushroom with a Middle Eastern za'atar seasoning is full of earthy and slightly pungent tastes. Blowfish tails is a comparably esoteric option not often found elsewhere in the city. A mini ochazuke, or steamed rice bowl topped with scallops and shrimp, is full of concentrated seafood flavors. Pair these small plates with a series of saké that includes filtered, unfiltered and sparkling selections.
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