NYC FOOD FILE: Mira Sushi & Izakaya

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Every season, NYFW is scenery to the most decadent and extravagant cultural experiences out there. The whole city, all of a sudden, puts its best face forward and locals, as well as visitors, get to finally witness what the Big Apple truly has to offer. The best of the best ! As previously mentioned in my New York City Restaurant Guide, Mira Sushi & Izakaya has been a true revelation this season and being the very first spot I hit when I got back to New York for Fashion Week, I thought it would deserve a proper introduction on the blog :)

Fellow foodies will all agree, ambiance is key and the Flatiron's sophisticated yet, relaxed dining room prides itself on introducing to its young-professional & Asian food enthusiast crowd, a series of Japanese triptych canvases set against bold backgrounds, such as earthy wood tables, comfortable banquettes and exposed brick walls. An unusual decor for the traditional type of eatery that are Izakayas yet, charming, with its East-meet-West allure and overall vibe. The evening began over a round of tasteful house cocktails featuring Mira Cosmos; a subtle mix of Skyy vodka, honey green tea, Cointreau, lime juice & pomegranate, and Old Fashioned's; pairing the sweet tastes of vermouth and benedictine to more bitter aromas like orange zest, Peychaud & Yamazaki 12 years.

The kitchens, led by Chef Brian Tsao, feature an extensive menu inspired by the street foods of Asia, weaving in flavors from Korea, Malaysia and China among Japanese classics such as yakitori and gyoza. We started off with a Japanese staple, sea salt seasoned Edamame and a dish of Salmon Poké with avocado and puffed rice, before moving on to four of the most popular signature dishes of the restaurant; the Spicy Tuna Pizza, the Spicy Salmon Crostini, the Beef Bulgogi Tacos & the Kobe Beef Hot Stone. And there, the real magic happened…

Pizza Sushi lovers haven't lived until they taste what Chef Tsao has put together for his speciality menu. The dish consists in a crispy roti, not too different from the usual deep fried rice galette but still a lot less filling, which I personally liked better, topped with guacamole, masago, kani, furikake flakes, sesame seeds and delightful teriyaki drizzles.

Being a huge fan of mexican cuisine and flavors I appreciated a lot the latin touch Chef Tsao gave to his Spicy Salmon Crostini and Beef Bulgogi Tacos. The crostinis featured a salmon skin chicharrón as the base to bite-size salmon tartare portions spiced with caviar, pickled daikon and nori powder. If heaven had a taste, that would probably be it ! And back to the speciality menu which is featuring the Beef Bulgogi Tacos; an award-winning dish that beat Chef Bobby Flay's in his namesake TV Show on Food Network. Also being a big fan of Bobby, I was quite impressed and frankly, hugely amused ;) On a wonton taco shell, was layered the Bulgogi beef, kimchi slaw, Korean pear slices, scallions & toasted sesame.

The highlight to my evening at Mira's was undoubtedly the Kobe Beef, cooked tableside on a burning hot Himalayan salt stone; so hot in fact, if it wasn't placed over thick layers of lemon slices, it would have burned throughout the wooden tables ! The whole experience itself is breathtaking and the actual gastronomic experience, mouthwatering. It really all came down to the quality of the beef we got to enjoyed. The farm the restaurant gets its Wagyu from is located in Kyushu, in the Miyazaki Prefecture of Japan. Although not the famed region of Kobe, Miyazaki has won several Japanese National Wagyu Competitions in recent years and great measures are taken to protect the prized Black Cows raised in that prefecture, going as far as disinfecting vehicles and footwear entering the farm. The cows go through the fattening stage from ten months to thirty months old, on a diet of grain and rice straw. Once right in front of our eyes, the fatty meat took about two to four seconds to cook on each sides, before tasting (scratch that, devouring!)  ;)

As our table ran out of cocktails around that time, we gradually moved on to sake, preferring a cold bottle to a hot one (my personal go-to selection!). It was in fact, the perfect pairing to the next part of our dining experience, sushis ! At Mira's, sushi Chef Owen Wu mans the sushi bar, creating whimsical, unique sushi rolls such as the Rock Lobster Roll; succulent spicy lobster salad topped with lobster tail, avocado, sweet soy dressing and divinly spicy homemade mayo, and the Dynamite Roll; part wild blue crab, part avocado, topped with seared spicy scallops and fried vermicelli. Although I am not exactly a fan of untraditional rolls, I absolutely love it when Chefs are able to push the envelop further and put together foods and components, to achieve the perfect taste and the perfect dish !

And for a sweet finale, we got to share the Kyoto S'mores, a very clever twist on the original dessert featuring a green tea brownie (yup, you read right!) and homemade marshmallow, and a dairy-free option, the Lavender Panna Cotta made with velvety soy coconut milk and fresh lavender berry compote. If you have a sweet tooth, it is definitely worth leaving some space for Mira's dessert menu which features five decadent sweet recipes, an extensive list of teas and coffees, as well as a few digestives and nightcaps such as Plum Sake and Ice Wine. A really big thank you to Mira Sushi & Izakaya for welcoming us in their gorgeous restaurant during New York Fashion Week and for introducing us to their take on contemporary Asian cuisine !

46 West 22nd Street
New York, NY, 10010

For reservations please call 212.989.7889;
reserve online here;
or order online here fore takeouts
Visa, American Express, MasterCard, Diner’s Club

Open for

Mon – Thu: 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Fri: 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Sat: Noon – 4 PM

Mon – Thu: 4 PM – 10:30 PM
Fri: 4 PM – 11:30 PM
Sat: 6 PM – 11:30 PM

Closed Sundays


The post Mira Sushi & Izakaya appeared first on PBTH **

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