Japanese Restaurant & Grill
(1) 212 979 9674
231 East 9th St.
(Btw 2nd – 3rd Av)
New York, NY 10003
12:00m – 2:25pm Wednesday – Friday
12:00m – 2:50pm Friday & Saturday
6:00pm – 10:45pm Sunday – Thursday
6:00pm – 11:45pm Friday & Saturday
In the growing section of Little Tokyo, Manhattan’s ninth street between 2nd & 3rd avenues, we find the NY sister to the original Robataya in Roppongi, Tokyo. Robatayas are descended from traditional beach restaurants where fishermen grilled their catch over an open fire and served directly to their customers via their oars. (“ro” means hearth, or fireplace). It’s origin leads back to the city of Sendai in the northeast of Japan, and today Robata chefs still use a wooden paddle to pass food to customers.
As you enter New York’s Robotaya, you are presented with an enormous counter, spread with the abundance of land and sea. Ingredients are beautifully displayed, cleaned and mouth wateringly ready. You simply point at whichever you wish and the chef descends at lighting speed from his elevated platform, set high as to give them more flexibility to access the spread before them. As you are being served, your meal is announced loudly in best Japanese tradition, echoed by the rest of the staff as the chef passes you your lovely dish directly by on the long paddle.
All of the food is exquisite in its quality and taste, and as you have so much to choose from, there is something for everyone. A stand-out is the potent matcha soup with floating chestnuts and mochi,