The Best Sushi In New York

by Thomas Beller


E 11th St & 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

Neighborhood: East Village

Iso is the best sushi in New York. This is due, mostly, to the freshness of the fish, the portions, which are generous, the style of presentation, the bustle of the place, the color of the napkins and table cloths (an extremely appealing pink), the manner of Iso himself and the other sushi chefs who make the sushi (brusque but friendly, downright chatty towards the end of the night when he has his can of Bud), and of his wife, Miyaki, and the staff, many of whom have been there for some time, and the flowers, and the cool Keith Haring logo (Iso founded the place with Keith Haring in 1985), but mostly it is because of the sushi. It is simply fantastic and exhilirating sushi, the best in New York or, to be more humble about it, the best Sushi south of Mid-town.


The man himself

In July of 2002, Iso heard a ruckus outside his place and stepped out to see what was going on. What was going on was that a crazy person was robbing Bar Veloce, the wine bar next door. His gun went off… and hit Iso in the wrist! It was like a tennis player catching a stay bullet. He was out of commision for a month. But he is back, he is all better, and if you catch him at the end of the night near the midnight closing time, drinking his customary end of night beer, he will shake your hand if you say hello


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§ 3 Responses to “The Best Sushi In New York”

  • michael says:

    I miss the place, i had been going since it opened. Last i heard ISo and miyaki went back to japan.

  • DD says:

    I lived on 11th St. in the east village for many years… But must confess I was not much of a regular patron at Iso.
    However, I somehow ended up with the Keith haring logo SWEATSHIRT that was created… (I believe the waiters wore T-shirts with Keith graphic on them.)

    Been waiting for years for someone to track me down and offer me huge amounts of money for this (only existing?) extremely rare masterpiece… but so far my phone has not wrong!
    So I will just continue to enjoy owning this nice piece of art that reminds me of what a great guy and great artist Keith was…

  • DrJarv says:

    I lived in Tribeca ’94/’95 and must have eaten in Iso at least twice a week, every week.

    Iso-san and his team were just fantastic and I’d always sit at the bar just to be able to watch them in action. Damn, this place was so special.

    The Keith Roll! A Cali roll but wrapped in wafer-thin cucumber that the chefs peeled in the round from the cucumber itself with the sharpest of knives – amazing to watch.

    I was such a regular that there would be embarrassing moments when I’d be at the back of the queue snaking out the door and along the block and Miyaki would spot me from inside and come out and usher me in – to the sound of much grumbling discontent from the queue!

    Very, very, very special. Iso-san, Arigato gozaimasu!

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