1143 1st Ave, New York, NY | Directions 1002140.766523 -73.956947
Neighborhoods: Upper East Side, Midtown, Lenox Hill
Sushi savants tend to have wildly varying opinions on what is great and what consitutes a mediocre rip-off. I'm no expert on the subject but Sushi Seki was the only sushi experience I can say really blew me away. The depth of umami, the orignalitiy, the presentation, are all unlike anything else in New York. Sushi Zen is the best for pure, no-frills, traditional sushi (with 15 east maybe a close second) but this place is the bomb.
Doesn't hold a candle to Yasuda's flame – My wife and I wanted to go to a nice sushi restaurant for New Year's. Our regular awesome sushi spot - Sushi Yasuda - was closed. Not sure why, but that is for another post. In any event, we got the Zagat's guide and called a few places, but they were either booked or closed. Sushi Seki it was. First, this is not a place that you get dressed up to go to. It looks just like any other neighborhood place. The sushi was ok - the fish was satisfactory, but the rest of the sushi rolls, well, they did not compare with how Sushi Yasuda's rolls melt in your mouth with pure sushi goodness. Maybe our expectations were too high, maybe we didn't have a great experience because we didn't do the special tasting menu. I don't know. All I know is that it wasn't worth the price. And it didn't help that they charged an extra dollar per roll for cucumber. Which reminds me of another deficiency - my wife and I routinely order one order of edamame each, because, well, we like edamame. At this place, however, the two orders we got were less than one order at Yasuda. Therefore, we would not recommend this place to anyone.
Incredibly Rude Maitre D – The host at the front is so incredibly rude that we walked out, and vowed never to spend another dime there. Their sushi may be good, but that does not mean that they can be outright obnoxious to their customers. They lost good paying customers for good.
RIP OFF!!!! $400 and hungry – So a buddy an myself are culinary athletes gods if you will of our own realm . We went there last night in the storm and waited 50 minutes for a table no biggie, its thursday night prime time.we sit at the sushi bar sweet right at the action and decide we want a $100 omakase . We think we are in for a meal. yea right 9 peices of fish later 3 sapporos and a couple of sake shots it $400 dollars >>> wait im still hungry!!! 9 peices coursed over an hour and a half is like me eating bird food ... not gonna fill the BIG GUY . To there credit the fish was great and its management that screwd us . BE CAREFUL when eating there. go to gari way better or nobu 57. and we lost the umbrella >>>> poor ron mexico.
BEST SUSHI IN NYC – I am a sushi connoisseur and let me tell you, this sushi restaurant is absolutely the best sushi I have had. Ever. Okay, I may not be a connoisseur, but I know my sushi pretty well. I know I don't like huge pieces slapped on the rice, I can tell whether it has salty flavor or if its just plain bland, and I know the prime fish of the season. (If you know your sushi too, you know what I am talking about) Sushi Seki's sushi is always fresh and incredible. You should definitely get the omakase (in case you don't know what that is- it's the chef's choice of fish in the order of most fresh to least, and best tasting followed by something that will compliment that etc.) The pieces are creative instead of regular sushi (which you can also get and will taste great). The omakase includes:
salmon with tomato
yellowtail with jalapeno
spicy scallop hand roll
tuna with tofu sauce
I'm drawring a blank now but those are just some of my favorites. The staff is very polite and accommodating and the chefs are great too. Not the most talkative, but they're usually pretty busy.
It's rather expensive, but you get what you pay for.
Oh, and it's more of a traditional Japanese atmosphere as opposed to a chic, modern bar for those of you who are taking dates. :) I happen to like that better, but I can not speak for everyone.
Awesome place for sushi – Awesome place to go for sushi. Sushi Seki does a good job on presentation and everything I had was very fresh and tasty. I definately recommend the Chirashi Sushi and the Edamame Appetizer.
Absolutely perfect – One of the best sushi places in NYC without question. Manager is a bit uptight, so you might want to make a reservation even on a weekday.
very good sushi – the sushi here is great and they open very late. The service and chefs gives you great attention. great place
Am I taking crazy pills? – Throughout the meal I endured the culinary mediocrity with patience and hopeful anticipation. What was I waiting for? The bill. I was hopeful that I had found a place where fresh fish was available at a discounted price. I mean, any half knowledgeable sushi eater could recognize the shortcomings of the Chinese sushi chefs at Sushi Seki, chefs who clearly lack the technical ability, culinary expertise, and talent to compose great sushi. So if this is the case, the only explanation for how busy Seki was, must be that good fish was made available at great prices to compensate for poor cooking ability. The bill was 600 for 3 people. We did drink a lot, but omakase was still 95 per person before tax and tip. 95/person for sushi that had rice that was insufficiently moist, where grains of rice felt separated and hard, removing any sense of textual uniformity, failing to properly complement the soft texture of the fish. 95/person for sushi that was cut haphazardly, without the care and attention of slicing delicately at the proper angles on and around the fish to enhance the softness of the flesh (the most horrendous example of a lack of good knife work was the toro which had sinews allowed to be left running through the flesh making it tough and chewy; can you believe I had to spiit out a piece of toro?!). 95/person for sushi that at times were seasoned in such a way as to completely smother the taste and complexion of what, on its own, would have been a wonderful piece of fish. For instance, tuna sushi drenched in black bean sauce, sauteed onions, and garlic chips was an overwhelming insult to the palate. The only highlight of the meal was the californian uni sushi. Sweet and fresh, the uni was really enjoyable. However, it was far from enough to save this meal from being a bitter, wallet-injuring disappointment. After getting the bill, I looked around at the packed restaurant and felt like Will Ferrel in Zoolander. "Am I taking CRAZY PILLS?!?!"
Best Sushi in NYC! – I am a huge sushi snob, I've been eating sushi since I was 3 and still love it at least once a week. Sushi Seki is fresh and creative. The quality of the fish doesn't get any better than theirs. I highly recommend getting the Omakase, its amazing! I am now spoiled and can only go there. Its seriously worth your money!! The uni is excellent!!!
Smiled all the way home – The key is to go and have Seki san prepare your food. Sit at the counter and let him take care of you.
Omakase is the way to go at any sushi restaurant. If you are looking for good creative sushi, this is the place.
Apparently a disciple of Gari, Seki decided to open his own place. And there's nothing wrong with that.
We sat at Seki's counter and he took real good care of us.
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