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Restaurant Review: Nobu Downtown, New York in the USA

By Megan Lawton on 18th February 2019

Downtown New York is home to the city’s buzzing financial district; from dawn till dusk the sky-high offices are brimming with life and the streets overflowing with briefcase-clutching workers dashing between meetings. But step into Nobu Downtown and you’ll find the corporate world is left at the front door.

The Downtown branch only opened in April 2017, but feels like it’s been on the scene for years; perhaps because it’s a relaunch of the original Nobu in Tribeca? It has all the hallmarks of any other branch – the interior is glamourous and stylish, the service staff can’t do enough for you and, of course, they serve incredible food.

When we arrived at Nobu, my mother and I were feeling rather dazed and confused, having landed earlier from a delayed 6 hour flight, followed by a two hour queue at a hot, stuffy JFK arrivals and another two hour queue in NYC’s rush hour traffic. However, as soon as we were greeted, we felt instantly relaxed and in good hands.

Nobu’s incredible yellowtail sashimi dish

This feeling of content was only enhanced upon by taking a sip of Jakob Schneider’s Riseling Kabinett and, for my mother, a glass of Squealing Pig’s Sauvingnon Blanc – is it me or does alcohol taste even better when you’re stressed?!

Having not eaten for several hours, we quickly tucked into a feast of fish. Each dish was delicious, from the first course of charred baby corn, tossed in a truffle honey, to the lobster salad, which came with diced tofu skin and parmesan.

My personal highlight was the Black Miso Cod and aubergine; the cod had marinated for two days and you could taste the depth of flavour. It was buttery, rich and silky – everything black cod should be.

The rock shrimp tempura was my mother’s favourite; the popcorn-sized bites were tossed in a creamy, spicy sauce and served on yuzu drizzled greens. The plate was light and not remotely greasy – it’s the ultimate comfort food and now we find ourselves craving it every Saturday! Nobu home delivery anyone?!

The stunning rock shrimp tempura

Although those were the stand outs, we also loved the yellowtail and Toro specials. Served with a yuzu soy sauce, coriander and jalapeno, the yellow tail sashimi was outstanding. The spicy pepper added a welcome fire which contrasted with the sweet soy.

The Toro special is unique to Nobu Downtown and well worth ordering. Cased in crispy filo, the delicate tuna slice was topped with wasabi and caviar, making for two mouthfuls of sheer heaven.

Nobu’s black cod is out of this world

After indulging in Nobu’s superb seafood offerings, we moved onto pudding – as a chocolate lover I went for the caramel brownie and my Mother, the yuzu lime bar. Both desserts were tasty and full of flavour – but, being honest, as seafood lovers, my mother and I would rather have swapped the sweets for another fish dish.

The seafood is not the only stunning thing Nobu offer, but the interior and atmosphere too. Diners sit under a canopy of stunning wood work trees with subdued lighting. And from each table, guests are invited to look over the kitchen, which is miraculously calm and in total contrast with the buzzy dining room. But if a bustling dining room is not your scene, don’t fret – the restaurant also has a casual bar and lounge area upstairs, where guests can order snacks and choose from an incredible cocktail list.

It probably won’t come as a surprise that a night at Nobu is expensive; our food alone came to $280 (around £220) but it was one of the highlights of our trip to New York and worth every penny – or cent in this case!

Address: 195 Broadway, New York, NY 10007, USA
Phone: +1 212-219-0500
Website: noburestaurants.com/downtown