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A Secret I Keep: Bohemian

February 16, 2012

Some secrets are fun.  Some secrets are dangerous.  Others are plain delicious.  Bohemian in Noho is one secret that I gladly hold close to my heart but at the same time, dying to share with friends.  This particular sign-less hideout resides behind a modern looking Japanese butcher shop on Great Jones street.  Bohemian might have one of the least informative websites out there and all you will gleam from there is that in order to dine there, you have to email and wait patiently for an invite.  I was able to get my hands on the reservation number last year and this has become one of my favorites for when the mood strikes and when the company is great.

I found myself at the bar during a recent visit.  The restaurant is simply decorated, a square white room with 8 low tables with sofa like chairs with 6 additional seats at the bar.  Because the room is spaciously laid out, there is never that feeling of dining on top of the couple at the next table over and neither will conversations leap from one table to another.  What a rare delight in this space deprived city of ours!

I like to keep things interesting so I try to make sure that I order a few new items from the menu during each visit.  This time, the meal started with a lightly salted Japanese pickle topped with yuzu gelee.  The cooling gelee was tart and bright, pairing well with the crunchy refreshing cucumbers.

In a seafood mood, we went with a half dozen bucket of plump East coast oysters with a sharp mignonette.  Nothing out of the ordinary here, just good old plain crisp briny bivalves from the Atlantic Ocean.

The Kobe beef sashimi was a dish that I had looked forward to ever since making the reservation.  Actually, that’s a lie – they have been on my mind since the last visit.  One of the few repeat orders, eight thinly sliced beef slices arrived on a granite slab with a dab of wasabi and lemon along with a shallow dish of garlic soy sauce.  The lemon added a zing to the beef and cut the richness.  Each Kobe slice literally melt the second I put it in my mouth.  These were so flavorful and tender that you forget that they are raw, just craving for another order as they disappear in the blink of an eye.

For our main dishes, we were both eyeing the uni and ikura rice bowls so we had to get our own.  The beauty of this dish is that it is so simple.  Two creamy plump lobes of uni along with generous scoops of jewel like ikura sat on top of soft sushi rice.  A closer look at the stunning dish.

While the rice might not have been the best I have had (slight disappointingly for a Japanese restaurant), we were too busy savoring the bounty of the sea to notice.

To wrap up the meal, another returning dish – the miso black cod with uni gratin.  Bohemian does a great rendition of this quintessential Japanese American dish, pairing it with pickled cherries and a small ramekin of whipped potato gratin with more uni.  Tender flakes of cod literally fell apart when I tried to pick them up but I made sure to scoop up every little bit between the wooden spoons and chopsticks.

A delicious end to another fantastic meal at this hideaway.  Even though Bohemian has become a rather well publicized secret, the reservation number is still not easy to come by.  So if you are able to get your hands on it, I hope to see you there soon over a plate of that dreamy Kobe beef sashimi and one of their delicious cocktails!

Bohemian | 57 Great Jones Street, New York, NY 10012 |

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 16, 2012 5.19 pm


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