Away from all the mega-resto-openings this season, a new yakitori joint recently opened up on Kenmare Street. The restaurant itself is tiny tiny, and very intimate. Diners perch side-by-side on one long bench or in the single table up front that seats maybe 6 people. The wood decor and open charcoal grilled kitchen give a warm vibe – perfect for those blizzardy bad hair snow days when you just want some Japanese bbq, a Sapporo and your best friend’s left ear to unload your problems.
We went during the first week’s soft opening to check it out – very pleasant experience. Price points seem a tad steep given that it’s “yakitori”, but this is not your hole-in-the-wall spot for college kids on a budget. The meats are all super organic and the execution is top notch. They are catering more towards the discriminating, foodie crowd, and the skill level really shines through. Highlights of the menu include the organic chicken, berkshire pork kakuni (slow simmered) and the creative desserts. Super authentic yet whimsical – with items such as fois gras onigiri on the menu. (We will try next time).
Tora is a great spot to go in small groups of 2 or 3 since you’ll be saddled up close together. Or, just snag the big table with a gaggle of friends. Great spot, we loved it and will be back.
72 Kenmare Street
New York NY 10013
Tel. +1 212 966 1100