As indoor dining finally makes a comeback in New York City, Takeda has officially reopened its doors. Located at 566 Amsterdam Avenue, between 87th & 88th Streets, Takeda offers a one-of-a-kind, authentic omakase experience that will leave you both amazed and satisfied with the freshest fish Japan has to offer.
After walking in, I was instantly greeted by the friendliest staff ready to escort me to my seat. The simple decor, along with the soft jazz playing in the background, created such a welcoming atmosphere and a perfect start to the evening. The menu consists of two options: a 16 and 21 course omakase. After making your choice, Chef Takeda immediately begins to prepare your meal.
The first word that comes to mind to describe Chef Takeda’s work is mesmerizing. After training in Osaka, Japan, and working in various high-quality sushi restaurants around the city, it’s clear to see that he is a master of his craft. He placed the first course in front of me: Fluke with a bright orange citrus jelly and Japanese spinach. Not only was the plate visually appealing, but it was unbelievably delicious. The medley of flavors meshed so well together and it was the start of an amazing omakase experience.
Takeda specializes in conservative, traditional style sushi made with the freshest of ingredients. In fact, they receive daily shipments of ingredients and 90% of their fish comes directly from Japan. The next few courses showcased shrimp from Hokkaido, kohada from South Japan, and sardines from Osaka.
My two personal favorites were the buttery, grilled black cod and the savory eel nigiri – both lightly cooked over a small charcoal grill behind the sushi bar. These two dishes are enough to convince you to come back again. You can taste the quality of the ingredients in every course that’s served.
The uni (sea urchin) was so creamy, the otoro (fatty tuna) basically melted in your mouth, and the ikura (salmon roe) popped with so much flavor. Even the garnishes they use are fresh; they grind up their own wasabi and they make their ginger in-house.
What adds to Takeda’s unique dining experience is the intimate atmosphere. As you are enjoying one course, you get to watch the next one being made right in front of you. Chef Takeda is not only talented but very meticulous, and it shows when you watch him create the different pieces with such finesse. It truly is dinner and a show. Not only that, but the staff there will treat you like family; I couldn’t help but notice how accommodating everyone was and they genuinely enjoyed conversing with a party seated nearby. You cannot find that kind of service everywhere.
If you ever find yourself in the neighborhood, consider making dinner plans at Takeda. The cozy ambiance, fresh ingredients, delicious courses, and friendly staff all contribute to an incredible omakase experience. Dining at Takeda will not disappoint; it is definitely the Upper West Side’s hidden gem, with rave reviews earning it 4.9 out of 5 stars on Google and 4.5 out of 5 stars on Yelp.
To make reservations, please visit resy.com/cities/ny/takeda. They are open Monday – Saturday and have seatings at 6pm and 8:15pm. Takeda also offers limited take-out options on their website at takedanyc.com.