If you're looking for the best sushi in New York, you've come to the right place.
New York's sushi scene has evolved greatly over the past two decades - so much so that great sashimi and nigiri can be found in most neighborhoods. Today, Manhattan boasts some of the highest quality seafood outside of Japan, and the city's top counters are as good as many respected spots in Tokyo. One thing to note, however, is that thanks to recent inflation, many sushi places have raised their prices, making the budget-friendly and simple restaurants even more attractive.
Below you'll find everything from Shion 69 Leonard, where you'll probably spend over $1,000 for two people, to the quality-focused neighborhood gem that still offers great, affordable sushi.
It's the Upper East Side where the richest of the rich live and the cheapest meal at Sushi Noz is $250. Held in what's called the Ash Room, this nigiri-dominated $250 menu includes three entrees, 15 pieces and miso soup. There's also a more luxurious $400 version that can only be made by Chef Noz himself.
This shoebox-sized sushi mecca debuted in December 2019, just before the pandemic hit. Chef and owner Yukihiro Takeda helms the eight-seat counter, and it's thanks to him that the Upper West Side now has a higher-quality omakase sushi option. His 19-course Edomae-style menu costs $250 and features seafood flown in several times a week from Tokyo's Toyosu Fish Market.
This West Village restaurant starts at around $60 for nine pieces and a "handroll," often offering unusual cuts like fireflies or barracuda (plus more typical fan favorites like toro). You can always order a la carte or upgrade and try the 15-course omakase for about $120, but the $60 deal feels the sweetest.
$$$$ 63 DELANCEY STREET, NEW YORK
Douska on the Lower East Side doesn't care about fancy. Instead, this casual spot specializes in spot-on hand rolls that combine fresh yellowtail, a few wild scallions, and warm vinegared rice in a little hug of crispy nori. Eating at Douska is a relaxed experience that's inexpensive by NYC standards, with almost all options here under $50 USD.
SHION 69 LEONARD STREET
At $420 per meal, Shion 69 Leonard Street is one of the most expensive omakases in the city. The restaurant delivers everything you need for the price: expertly prepared fish, impeccable service, and enough food to avoid having to secretly eat a second dinner at McDonald's. But what really makes the two-hour meal stand out is the seven-plate otsumami course in the first half, with signature dishes like butterfish in hot ponzu, a cold horsehair crab salad, and tilefish with fried scales. Nigiri follows - sometimes using rare fish from Amakusa, the chef's hometown - and the dreamy slice of tomago at the end is particularly memorable. Come to this restaurant for a special occasion, but be aware that "extinguishing" sake and singing "Happy Birthday" here would be akin to TikTok dancing at a funeral. This food demands your presence as if it were the cult leader of a silent meditation retreat.
SUSHI ON ME
This Jackson Heights, Queens party spot offers four sushi omakase seatings, each with 15 pieces of nigiri, a few appetizers, and unlimited sake for $89 cash. A meal here feels less like a typical omakase experience and more like a daring basement party with songs like "Sweet Home Alabama" blasting from the speakers. Whenever a guest's cup is empty, the owner refills and also refills his own cup. After about two rounds, the people sitting next to you at the sushi bar slowly become more relaxed. Then, together to “Mambo No. 5,” everyone sings loudly as they eat.
$$ $$ 47 E 12TH ST, NEW YORK
On East 12th Street, just below Union Square, there is a large, unmarked black door with a bouquet of dried flowers in place of a sign. Open the door and walk past the velvet curtain and you will find a party. A party where you have your own sushi chef, your sake or cocktail glass is never empty and the music changes from Lauryn Hill to Wu Tang Clan to Biggie. But nothing can distract from sushi - 18 of the best fish treats you've ever eaten. Yes, this place is expensive ($228 for the seasonal omakase), but if you're looking for an incredible meal for special occasions, you should definitely come here.
You can reserve a spot at this lively sushi bar or head to the second-floor banquet at this laid-back fishbowl restaurant. The Omakase Kiwami ($250) at the newer Momoya Soho is a deluxe set of compelling dishes that are well worth the splurge, but there are plenty of other wallet-friendly a la carte options that keep dinner and a drink under $75 each person can hold.
$$$$ 62 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019
Beyond Sushi is a small place that specializes in “vegan sushi” and some other healthy plant-based, Asian-inspired foods. As questionable as it may sound, many dishes turn out to be extremely filling and delicious, you can't go far wrong for $10 USD.
If I were a restaurant critic I would be ashamed, but I can probably tell you the best sushi deal in New York. In the basement of the shops at Columbus Circle, there is one of the most expensive supermarkets in New York, Whole Foods, but for around $10 US, you can get cheap sushi that is prepared fresh right in front of you and there are a wide variety of varieties . I love it and recommend it as a quick lunch.