A few weeks ago, I visited one of the hottest bars in NYC these days, Uchu. Uchu offers kaiseki tasting for 8 exclusive guests at the bar. It is tasting only (about $200/per person not including tips and drinks) and all dishes are under the command of Chef Samuel Clonts, an alum of Brooklyn Fare. It was on top of my list since (a) I love Brooklyn Fare (b) this new concept of serving tasting menu at the cocktail bar is very intriguing (c) it also serves complementary Kettl teas at the end! As a tea curator, I had to visit Uchu
Uchu is located in Lower East Side
fresh tofu, ginger
As you might have already noticed, I had a problem with my camera for the half of the course. There are black lines running on the background. Excuse my photos. But I fixed it with the help of another guest who was using the same camera later!
tomato dashi, nasturtium
Squid with tomato and edible flowers. While lots of restaurants try to offer farm to table, once in NYC, it is pretty hard to achieve that. Instead Uchu offers roof to table. They have a small garden on top of roof that they plant vegetables and flowers to freshly serve their guests
Chef Samuel Clonts
Although he is mainly at the kitchen, he occasionally comes out to serve some of signature dishes by himself
Eddy is a beer person. He ordered Japanese beer recommended by Bar manager, Frank Cisneros. They serve in the glass that is a shape of Mt. Fuji! One thing that I really appreciate at Uchu is how every little thing is detail oriented. I I could see that every single glass, cutlery, dinnerware is thoughtfully selected to create the overall experience
SIBERIAN STURGEON CAVIAR HANDROLL
Chef Samuel is generous with the portion of caviar!
There was another dish that I forgot to take a photo before this. It was JIDORI EGG (squash, golden trout roe)
NORWEGIAN KING CRAB
squash blossom, carrot orange
AUSTRALIAN BLACK TRUFFLE
foie gras, porcini, milk bread
A5 MIYAZAKI WAGYU
INGRIS BENGIS LOBSTER DONABE
The art of making cocktails Although I don’t drink cocktails much, since this place is so unique, I had to order its signature cocktail, RAMEN. Frank is delicately putting every piece together
They shred pears to make noodles! Beautiful drink
lingonberry, fingerlime, yuzu
with Matcha from Kettl
Soba Tea from Kettl
One of my favorite teas to drink at night since there is no caffeine
Such a lovely presentation. Did not want to leave this wonderland
Avengers from Uchu, Jacob(left) & Frank (right)
Frank Cisneros spent a year at Mandarin Oriental Tokyo and this explains why he is so knowledgeable about Japanese drinks and its culture. Jacob on the left is also great. Not only can he make cocktails but also can serve great teas
Love their sake broach!Close up!
I don’t usually like to compare things but since they have been marketing the chef Samuel as an alum of Brooklyn Fare, I couldn’t help noticing many similar dishes with the same flow. They both serves many dishes with uni, truffle, caviar, wagyu beef, Asian style rice, and souffle! They even serve the same teas from Kettl. As for food wise, although Brooklyn Fare is about $100 more expensive, I personally would pay more to eat at Brooklyn Fare.
However, the ambiance at Uchu was very unique. I have to say having tasting menu at the bar and simultaneously watching the art of making cocktails was an exquisite experience. As a tea enthusiast, I am glad that now we finally have someone who appreciates good teas and knows how to make it properly in a fine restaurant. (Uchu does not serve coffee but only tea and it is complementary! At least when I visited in August 2017).
Therefore, I would love to visit Uchu for just cocktails and some a la carte dishes. However, they only serve 2 shifts of tastings and do not just serve cocktails. Hopefully maybe in the near future?
Oh, FYI. Uchu is divided into 2 different sections. 10 seat Omakase sushi bar by Ichimura and 8 seat Kaiseki bar. I have to visit sushi bar by Ichimura! Welcome back Chef Ichimura.
Uchu Kaiseki Bar
- Address : 217 Eldridge St, New York, NY 10002
- Phone : (212) 203-7634
- Hours : Tue – Thur 6PM – 12AM, Fri- Sat 6PM – 1AM (closed on Sun & Mon)
- Reservation : https://resy.com/cities/ny/bar-uchu
- Website : http://uchu.nyc/