Brooklyn may be one of five New York City boroughs, but it’s a giant city in and of itself. You could spend weeks touring through its many vibrant neighborhoods and exploring all of its many cultural, historical, and natural attractions.
At the heart of it all is downtown Brooklyn, a busy business center by day and a low-key residential community by night. It’s not all business in downtown Brooklyn, with amazing venues like the Barclay Center where visitors can catch a basketball game, or the Brooklyn Academy of Music that puts on a wide variety of operas, ballets, and rock concerts.
Downtown Brooklyn’s iconic Brooklyn Bridge Park has thousands of visitors each year who come to catch stellar views of the NYC skyline. The food scene here also has excellent dishes to offer tourists and locals looking for a tasty meal in a casual, comfortable atmosphere.
I was happy to enjoy Brooklyn’s low-key, friendly vibe at its many sushi restaurants, which I would’ve normally written off as fine dining establishments. If you’re looking for the best sushi in downtown Brooklyn, you’ll find it on this list of excellent restaurants, market stalls, and sake bars.
Best Sushi in Downtown Brooklyn
- Daigo Hand Roll Bar
- Sumi Sushi
- Iron Chef House
- Ozu Japanese Cuisine & Lounge
- Ki Sushi
- Saketumi Asian Bistro
- Menya Jiro Brooklyn
- 1 OR 8
- Mitoushi Sushi
Daigo Hand Roll Bar
Dekalb Market Hall, 445 Albee Square W, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Located inside the bustling Dekalb Market Hall at the edge of Fort Greene, Daigo Hand Roll Bar is the closest you’ll get to Japanese street food outside of Japan.
Daigo Hand Roll Bar is a small market stall where perfectly simple sushi rolls are rolled by hand to order. The theatrics of a lively sushi kitchen amidst an even livelier urban market scene makes for a one-of-a-kind dining experience.
A great spot for a quick lunch or an after-work snack, Daigo Hand Roll Bar’s small menu features a wonderful selection of fresh fish and veggie combination rolls that you can make into larger, heartier rice bowls for an extra charge. I loved the seared salmon and eel avocado roll. They also have a selection of sake and imported Japanese beer.
287 Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217
Nestled between Prospect Heights and Park Slope, Sumi Sushi is a casual neighborhood sushi bar using the finest ingredients to create beautiful platters of traditional and innovative rolls, sashimi, and other Japanese favorites.
Prices are very reasonable, and there is an abundance of combo specials so customers can sample several different rolls and cuts of fish.
Sumi Sushi has an a la carte menú with simple rolls, specialty rolls, and a wide variety of combo platters like the Trio Sushi Dinner with three pieces of tuna, salmon, yellowtail, and spicy salmon roll. I also loved their Angry Dragon Special roll with shrimp tempura, spicy crabmeat, and avocado wrapped in soy paper and topped with spicy tuna, spicy mayo, and eel sauce.
134 Nevins St, Brooklyn, NY 11217
Taiki is an intimate and authentic sake bar and sushi counter in a small, nature-inspired dining space in the Boerum neighborhood.
Executive Chef Taiki Minamitani brings 18 years of experience as a sushi chef to the creation of the most elegant sushi plates, specialty cocktails, and imported sake.
You can choose from a traditional Omakase experience in which Chef Minamitani delivers a multi-course tasting menu of his favorite seasonal dishes or choose from a stunning a la carte menu. I started with the grilled octopus with citrus sweet koji, charred grapefruit, and sunchoke chips. The spicy-sweet shrimp roll was the perfect flavor combination.
Iron Chef House
92 Clark St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Located one block from Whitman Park in Brooklyn Heights, Iron Chef House is a casual neighborhood Japanese eatery with delivery and take-out options.
Its humble, unassuming storefront reveals a family-friendly brick-walled dining room and a small outdoor patio to enjoy a full menu of soups, noodles, sushi, and sashimi.
There are plenty of hot Japanese dishes like Teriyaki bowls and hearty Udon noodle soup. Iron Chef House also makes a bento-style lunch box with multiple compartments. This housing offers up perfectly assembled bite-sized assortments of shumai, spring rolls, noodles, salad, and miso soup.
Ozu Japanese Cuisine & Lounge
78 Clark St #2402, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Ozu Japanese Cuisine and Lounge is a Pan Asian fusion restaurant and cocktail lounge directly in front of Whitman Park in downtown Brooklyn Heights.
The classy, elegant dining room with its two-story ceilings and wooden tiles has a flashy big city feel uncharacteristic of Brooklyn’s low-key reputation. It’s a great place to enjoy a special night out with friends or a romantic date night.
Whether you want Pad Thai, fried rice, or modern specialty sushi, Ozu has it all. I started with the fluke wrapped with lobster and black tobiko from the sushi bar and also loved the Out of Control Roll with shrimp tempura and cucumber topped with crunchy spicy tuna and Kani.
122 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Located in Boerum Hills, Ki Sushi is a Michelin Guide-recommended sushi and Japanese restaurant that describes itself as a casual fine dining restaurant. It truly is fine dining food in a casual, low-key Brooklyn atmosphere, so you can enjoy the fanciest food without having to wear heels or a tie.
Sushi dishes at Ki Sushi are true culinary works of art, garnished with edible flowers and micro-greens and presented in colorful and elaborate arrangements. Don’t worry, they taste as good as they look. The grilled spicy miso sea bass with wild mushroom in chili white soy broth was a joyous celebration of flavors and textures.
Saketumi Asian Bistro
118 Montague St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Saketumi Asian Bistro is a casual, family-friendly Japanese restaurant with a lovely outdoor patio located between Brooklyn Bridge Park and Columbus Park.
Its affordable lunch specials and quick service make it a go-to lunch spot and take-out eatery for busy professionals. They also have one of the most extensive menus on my list.
Along with five different sushi, sashimi, and roll menus, Saketumi also has a wide selection of hot dishes like Katsu, Teriyaki, Noodles, and pan-Asian coconut curries. I got a kick out of the silly specialty roll names and ended up trying the dubious sounding Playboy roll with crunchy spicy salmon topped with black pepper tuna.
Menya Jiro Brooklyn
306 Gold St C2, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Menya Jiro is a premier ramen house founded in Japan’s Ibusuki City to wide acclaim. They quickly established a patented ramen brand that sprouted new restaurants around Japan and subsequently to the northeast U.S. Menya Jiro’s Downtown Brooklyn location is in a quaint and casual dining room and streetside patio with Astro-turf floors, yellow umbrellas, and a lush wall of bushes.
Ramen doesn’t get more authentic than Menya Jiro, and they also have a variety of delicious Japanese hot starters like gyoza, fried tofu, fried chicken wings, and savory rice bowls. Since Menya Jiro started in Ibusuki, I wanted to try their Ibusuki Ramen, made with pork and chicken broth, paired with soy sauce and garlic, pork chashu, scallions, bean sprouts, and fried garlic.
270 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Located in the heart of Cobble Hill, Osaka is a lovely neighborhood sushi bar with affordable prices, friendly staff, and a cute, authentically Japanese dining room with tatami tables and floor cushions. They also offer beer, wine, and a selection of sake.
Osaka has the highest quality food for the lowest price and has been a neighborhood favorite for years. They make the most unique selection of rolls with a mixture of new and traditional combinations.
For die-hard New Yorkers, they have the Philadelphia Roll with smoked salmon, cream cheese, and cucumber. My favorite is the Violet Roll with Alaska king crab meat, shrimp, caviar, and asparagus topped with chopped eel.
1 OR 8
229 Dekalb Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11205
1 OR 8 is a Clinton Hill Japanese restaurant serving traditional Japanese cuisine and a wide selection of sake and natural wine. 1 OR 8 prides itself on being a Brooklyn-grown eatery, serving its community delicious, simple, high-quality sushi in a trendy yet understated bar and dining room.
Their menu offers traditional Japanese bar fare like tempura plates, tonkatsu, pickled vegetables, fried chicken, and more. I loved their traditional inari, fried bean curd cooked in sweet soy and filled with sushi rice then topped with cucumber, ginger, and sesame.
177 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Located in the heart of Brooklyn Heights, Mitoushi Sushi is a fast-casual sushi bar where patrons can watch the skilled sushi chef cut and prepare each dish from a massive selection of rolls.
Despite its unassuming and humble dining atmosphere, Mitoushi’s dishes are elaborately displayed in beautifully styled arrangements atop wooden plates in the shape of boats and hearts to name a few.
Along with dozens of rolls, sashimi, and nigiri, Mitoushi Sushi has a variety of traditional appetizers like gyoza, Negimaki, deep-fried soft shell crab, and tempura plates. They also have Hibachi plates and poke bowls. I loved the Golden Dragon Roll with eel and cucumber, topped with avocado, mango, caviar, and eel sauce.
Downtown Brooklyn’s sushi restaurants are excellent choices for a quick and satisfying lunch on the go, lively sake and cocktail happy hours, or family-friendly shareable meals in longstanding neighborhood favorites.
Whatever dining experience you’re looking for, my list of the best sushi in Downtown Brooklyn guarantees that you’ll get the most delicious and fresh platters of rolls, sashimi, ramen, and more.
If you’re looking for drinks in Downtown Brooklyn, then you might like my guide to all the top bars in the area.
Did we miss your favorite sushi spot? Leave a comment for us and we’ll take a look!
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