Amami, Japanese restaurant in Brooklyn

Please note that the meal was complimentary. However, the opinions expressed in my blog are 100% my own!

 Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Last week, I was invited by Chef Nick Wang to sample his menu at Amami, a Japanese restaurant with a rustic and zen feel in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. I spoke a bit with Chef Wang who spoke about his passion to serve unique high quality food, using natural ingredients. In fact, Amami means "sweetness from the heavens" and the name written in Japanese calligraphy that is displayed on one of the walls of the dining room, also means harmony, representing the harmony of flavors as well as the harmony of the staff working in the restaurant like family as Chef Wang explained.

 Chef Nick Wang at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Chef Nick Wang at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Amami in Japanese Calligraphy at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Amami in Japanese Calligraphy at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

I love the decor there: rustic and zen as I mentioned before, and casual, but with a nice setting, a bit more elegant than your regular sushi place. Besides the main dining room, it has a small dining room in the back that can be used for private parties and accommodate 30 people. There are few things you cannot miss in the decor: the wood that is all over (yes, they respect wood...a Seinfeld reference) and the paintings made by a local artist, one of them being a geisha superbly made. At night, with its dimmed lights and music in the background, it has a lounge-y feel that I found comfortable, the noise level being quite good and allowing me to have a nice conversation with my wife. 

 Geisha Painting at Amami in Greenpoint

Geisha Painting at Amami in Greenpoint

 Dining room at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Dining room at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Sushi bar at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Sushi bar at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Bar area at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Bar area at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

I started the meal with a Japanese Old Fashioned that was made with Iwai Japanese Whiskey, fresh ginger and mint syrup, and Angostura Bitters. It was sublime, perfectly balanced and not too strong, it has a nice sweetness.

 Japanese Old Fashioned at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Japanese Old Fashioned at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Japanese Old Fashioned at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Japanese Old Fashioned at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

To start, they brought us a sashimi sampler with fish coming from the Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo, some of them, unknown to me, at least on a plate, such as the Blue Fusilier. The presentation was beautiful and I loved the fact that each piece of fish was served in a different manner. I should mentioned that they are part of the omakase menu that they serve at the sushi bar. There was:

 Sashimi sampler at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Sashimi sampler at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Kinme Dai (Alfonsino or red bream)with Sancho pepper and sea salt:

 Alfonsino or red bream at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Alfonsino or red bream at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Ara (Grouper) with spicy daikon                          

 Grouper at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Grouper at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Aodai (Blue Fusilier) with organic miso:

 Blue Fusilier at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Blue Fusilier at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Baby Kanpachi (Amber Jack) with crunchy garlic:

 Amber Jack at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Amber Jack at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Kurodai (Porgi or sea bream) with Kiwasa wasabi and gold leaf:

 Sea Bream at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Sea Bream at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

The next dish is something that they are testing and they wanted to know what we thought about it. It was a bigeye tuna tacos made with a homemade spinach shell. That was succulent: I loved the association of the tuna that had a soft texture with the crunchiness of the shell. I definitely think they should have it on the menu and would not be surprised it becomes a best seller.

 Bigeye tuna tacos at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Bigeye tuna tacos at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Bigeye tuna at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Bigeye tuna at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

After that, was a classic: yakitori. There were two kinds:

  • vegetarian with shishito peppers and King oyster mushrooms.
  • non-vegetarian with (from left to right): chicken heart, chicken gizzard, calamari legs (aka tentacles) and pork belly.

I loved both kinds, but if I had to pick, I would say that the pork belly was the best, followed by the chicken heart and oyster mushroom.

 Non-vegetarian yakitori at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Non-vegetarian yakitori at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Vegetarian yakitori at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Vegetarian yakitori at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Another vegetarian dish was the grilled miso eggplant that was much better than what I usually get in Japanese restaurants.

 Grilled miso eggplant at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Grilled miso eggplant at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

We then got a second sampler with fish, but this time it was a roll and sushi. The roll was their Tuna Salmon Twister, made with crunchy spicy salmon, honey roasted peanut topped with Japanese spice-crusted tuna, avocado and a spicy cherry aioli. The pieces of Nigiri included Blue Fin Otoro (Fatty Tuna), Hamachi Toro (Yellowtail Belly), New Zealand King Salmon, Madai (Sea Bream) and Scottish Salmon Belly.

 Roll and sushi sampler at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Roll and sushi sampler at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Tuna Salmon Twister roll at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Tuna Salmon Twister roll at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

 Sushi at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Sushi at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

At the same came their vegetarian ramen that is one of the best I tried so far, finding very often that vegetarian broths lack depth. Well this one was very good and I definitely recommend it if like me you love ramen. It was made of a soy bean based soup with seasonal mushrooms, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, wakame and scallion.

 Vegetarian ramen at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Vegetarian ramen at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

As I was ready to eat the sushi, they brought me an oyster shooter, made with a Kumamoto oyster, a quail egg, ikura or fish roe, grapefruit, yuzu infused vodka and topped off with Pochi Pochi sparkling sake.

 Oyster shooter at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Oyster shooter at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Last was dessert: they served us a green tea tiramisu and a miso ice cream, both homemade. I admit that I did not really liked the tiramisu that was a bit frozen on top, but the ice cream was phenomenal: it was quite creamy and had a nice caramel like taste.

 Green tea tiramisu and Miso ice cream at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Green tea tiramisu and Miso ice cream at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Oh, and I should mention the glass of premium sake they offered us with dessert, a Fukuju Junmai Dia Gingo. 

  Fukuju Junmai Dia Gingo sake at  Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

Fukuju Junmai Dia Gingo sake at Amami in Greenpoint, Brooklyn 

This was a spectacular dinner and I was glad we had to walk a bit to the train after that: Amami is not your regular Japanese joint and I see myself going back there just to enjoy some great food.

Enjoy (I did)!

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Amami - 57 Nassau Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222

 
Amami Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato