One of New York’s most-anticipated restaurant openings is finally here. Yakitori legend Yoshiteru Ikegawa made his Manhattan debut this week with the 17-seat Noho restaurant Torien. Ikegawa’s one Michelin-starred Tokyo restaurant Torishiki is nearly impossible to get into; seats book up as soon as they appear for the month.
At the NYC offshoot, the menu will be exactly the same as Torishiki: a focus on chicken skewers and vegetables. The omakase-style offering will be served in 14 courses and cost $150. Dishes include skewers of chicken thigh, wings, meatballs made from ground chicken, and grilled shiitake mushrooms.
Diners will have the option to choose some additional menu items halfway through the meal like a rice bowl with ground chicken and ramen with grilled chicken; there will also be a chicken soup to end the meal.
Almost everything inside the minimalist restaurant was brought over from Japan including soy sauce, the ceramic plates the food is served on, and the grills.
The man behind the famed yakitori spot will however not be there. Instead his disciple Yoshiteru Maekawa will lead the charge in New York, along with two other cooks from Japan.
For his New York debut, Ikegawa partnered with Showa Hospitality, a group that’s known for its Japanese and Mexican restaurants in cities like San Diego, Miami, and Mexico City. Torien is also Showa’s first outing in NYC.
Aside from Torishiki, Ikegawa runs another offshoot in Tokyo called Torikado — he’s not present there most days either, but the food is supposed to be just as good.
Torien is located at 292 Elizabeth Street, near East Houston St., and is open Tuesday to Sunday 6 p.m. to 12 p.m. The restaurant’s sold out this week, but reservations after 9 p.m. are still available next week.