There are a few things that every person must do at least once on a visit to NYC. Visit the Empire State Building. Check. Take a stroll through Central Park. Check. Do a little shopping on Canal St. in some back alley shop that you can only get to through a trick door. Check. Make an attempt to find the best sushi in NYC. Check!
I’m no stranger to NYC and I tried quite a few sushi places. I haven’t been disappointed by any of those restaurants, but I wasn’t blown away either. I was still on a quest to find THE sushi place in NYC. It has so many places to eat that there had to be something that would blow me away, right?! I did a little Yelp search on my last visit and came up with Blue Ribbon Sushi in Soho. Despite the $$$ listed on Yelp, I headed over for a bit to eat around lunch time.
If you walk too fast you could easily miss the front door. Just look for a small tree in the window and you will know you have made it.
Walking in I was greeted by a sleek and modern waiting area. From what I have read, dinner can get super busy here and with no reservations allowed this waiting area can get a little cramped. Fortunately I was here for lunch and there was absolutely no wait.
I was eating by myself so I asked to sit at the sushi bar. It is always fun to watch the sushi chefs work their magic. The way these chefs navigate their knives is amazing and I was totally engrossed.
The service was on point. As soon as I was seated I was brought a warm towel to wipe my hands. Every restaurant should offer this to their customers. My server offered up a few suggestions and then gave me some time to look over the menu.
I sipped on a glass of plum wine and ordered.
Wakame- Green seaweed with sesame dressing. $5.75
Fresh and not overdressed at all. It had a nice balance of sweet and salty that hit the spot and started the meal off on a nice light foot.
Yasei Kinoko– Miso soup with wild mushrooms. $6.50
At first look this soup looks…different. Then I realized that the miso is served on the side and I was supposed to add it it myself. I love miso so I added the whole dish. Greedy. I was intrigued by the mushrooms, but wasn’t sure how they would mix with the miso. I’m still not too sure, but I do know that the mushrooms themselves were perfect. Woodsy, a little spongy, and all kinds of earthy flavors.
Spicy Crab Roll– Blue crab & shiso. $12
By far…my favorite sushi roll to date. Not only at Blue Ribbon, but in general. Blue crab is where it is at. The meat is delicate and slightly sweet. I loved this variation of the crab roll. So simple, but powerful. This dish was was well worth the $12.
Negi Hama– Yellowtail & scallion. $8.25
Easy peasy. The fish tasted fresh. The texture was right. A wonderful little roll. Although at $8.25 it seems a little overpriced.
Ebi Tempura– Fried shrimp with radish sprouts & avocado $11.75
In general I really enjoyed this roll and all of its textures. I wouldn’t say any flavor really stood out for me, but the combo of avocado, sprouts and tempura was a nice melody of textures. This would be a great roll for someone who doesn’t enjoy raw fish and just was looking for something interesting to try.
The only downside to eating along at Blue Ribbon was that I was too stuffed to try the dessert. I have heard rumors that the Green Tea Crème Brulee is something out of this world.
Overall verdict: I’m not sure if this is the BEST sushi in NYC, but it certainly ranks up there in quality and taste. Everything was made well, but I didn’t think that all the rolls warranted the hefty price. Be prepared to shell out some money for your meal. Better yet…come with someone who will pay for you. 😉 Don’t forget to try anything with the blue crab! Great service and a friendly, but cozy atmosphere make this a stop I will try again on a future visit to NYC.
My sushi quest in NYC continues. If you have any recommendations, let me know!