On our last trip to NYC we went to Nobu Fifty Seven before we went to the theater. I have always wanted to try one of the restaurants of the legendary chef Nobu Matsuhisa. The space is surprisingly large with a minimalist and elegant in décor. I particularly like the detailed Japanese touches such as the sake barrels lining the staircase to the main seating area. Since Nobu is known for the hot and cold dishes more than the maki rolls we decided to focus on these and end with a few maki rolls.
You can’t go to Nobu without trying his signature new style sashimi. As legend has it he created this when a customer returned a plate of sashimi because they didn’t like raw fish. So, Nobu dressed the fish with soy sauce, citrus juice and sesame seeds and poured hot oil over it searing the thin fish. We started with the New Style Salmon Sashimi. It was lovely with the salty and tangy tones of the soy and citrus! Next we had the Yellowtail Sashimi with Jalapeño which was wonderful! The jalapeño was a perfect compliment to the delicate fish. We also tried the Sashimi Salad with Matsuhisa Dressing. This was a nice dish with sashimi served over salad greens and dressing with a dressing of soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and oil. This dish was simple and tasty but not as elegant or as creative as the others.
For the hot dishes we started with the Squid “Pasta” with Light Garlic Sauce. The squid itself was cut to look like pasta, served in a garlic sauce and accompanied with mushrooms and asparagus. While creative, this dish was rather plain. We followed this with the Black Cod with Miso. This was magnificent!! Black cod is a wonderfully oily fish that is seared to create a caramelized crisp skin and maintain a flaky fish. It is served in a miso sauce which just enhances the flavor of the delicate fish. Next we had the Creamy Spicy Crab. This too was very tasty! The crab is covered in spicy creamy sauce and broiled in a cast iron dish. It wasn’t particularly spicy but the creamy sauce did add richness to the dish.
We ended with several maki rolls including, spicy tuna, toro scallion and ume (Japanese plum). The rolls were very well prepared but again nothing that we haven’t had at a nice sushi restaurant.
Overall, we had a lovely meal and Nobu Fifty Seven! Nobu is legendary for having created several flavor combinations and dishes which are fairly common to sushi restaurants in the US so it was nice to get a chance to try them at one of his. However, with locations worldwide I believe his creative streak is over and we will only be able to enjoy these tried and true dishes.
Nobu Fifty Seven
40 West 57th Street
New York, NY 10019