Chinatown, NYC, is a cultural and historical hotspot for tourists and locals who want to explore (and taste!) one of the largest Chinatowns in America. It’s a bustling and exciting area that is constantly changing, with plenty of restaurants at different price points to explore that are close to popular attractions.
A visit to Chinatown isn’t complete without indulging in some sushi, whether an inexpensive but fun quick box of spicy sushi or a full sit down at a counter dinner known as an omakase where the chef makes all the decisions to guide you through a journey of culinary delights.
Sushi restaurants come in many shapes and sizes, so if an expensive dinner is out of the budget, there are plenty of budget options, including takeaway and delivery to scratch that sushi-loving itch. Let’s waste no more time—read on to find out where to get sushi in Chinatown!
79 Delancey St, New York, NY 10002
Starting the list is a bit of a hidden gem. It is only two blocks from the Delancey St & Essex St subway station and perched on the crossroads of Orchard and Delancey St in the Tenement Museum. Greeting you is a laidback sushi restaurant with a connected speakeasy bar.
Their menu begins with their omakase experience, which is essentially their 13-course sushi dinner that ends with beautiful mochi ice cream and features rolls and pieces made right in front of you. It is limited to eight people who can sit at the counter, but it’s a slightly expensive way to appreciate the full breadth of the chef’s skills and the high quality of their ingredients.
50 Eldridge St, New York, NY 10002
Sat near Lion’s Gate field, Sushi Hatsune is prioritizing takeout and delivery during the pandemic. Once they open back up to sit-down dining, you’ll see an airy and open space for long meals and set menus.
You are spoiled for choice with the menu at this sushi spot, even with delivery. I’m always indecisive when buying sushi, and I can never settle on just one item, so my favorite feature is the three-roll combo that comes with two sides. I always pick the spicy tuna, eel, and yellowtail jalapeno with miso soup and seaweed salad. It’s at least two delicious meals.
86 Madison St, New York, NY 10002
It can be fun to pair an activity with a restaurant. Go Sushi makes a great pairing with the museum at Eldridge Street, just a block away in a basement suite, and can be a nice light takeaway lunch after. They’re speedy too, especially at lunchtime, so you can grab a roll or two to take a break and refuel.
They have some of the freshest fish I experienced while tasting New York sushi at reasonable prices. They offer dim sum appetizers like tartar and buns, plus interesting items like samosas. The chef’s special rolls like the Manhattan roll are fun and creative and provide a nice twist on the traditional salmon, tuna, or yellowtail.
32 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10013
Regularly placed in the top 10 of best takeout sushi in New York lists, Juku is a beautiful and intimate space on the edge of Columbus Park within walking distance of Mulberry Hotel. The interior took my breath away. It would make a great date spot with a hint of romance in the dark wood walls.
Ok, yes, this is a sushi list, but when you’re here, save some room for the delicious Japanese fried chicken with lemon even if you order it to take away. On the sushi side, the spicy scallop roll is fresh and delicate with just enough spice, and the king salmon avocado roll is both affordable and packed full of flavor.
48 Bowery, New York, NY 10013
Nakaji is a gorgeous traditional sushi restaurant that offers Chinatown sushi and doubles as a craft cocktail bar. Set inside Canal Arcade on Canal and Bowery, the actual fixture of this place is its Chef, a third-generation sushi chef Kunihide “Nakaji” Nakajima, who lends his skills which he has been honing since he was 18.
With a chef this talented, it would be a pity to miss out on the omakase whose price reflects the skill of the chef and the two-and-a-half hours of tasting Edomae-style sushi. The Bar at Nakaji also offers small unique, but delicious plates like Ankimo, a Japanese monkfish liver simmered in soy.
37 Allen St, New York, NY 10002
In the Sogo Cafe on the corner of Hester and Allen St sits a sushi restaurant with a long name that’s well worth remembering. Currently, the restaurant, usually a conveyor belt sushi spot, is takeout and delivery only. Thankfully sushi travels well so that you can enjoy their menu in your home or hotel room.
The menu spans the gamut of Japanese food, from ramen to sushi to dim sum appetizers. The most challenging part is deciding what you want, and for me, that decision was made when I saw two of my favorite things on one menu: steam crystal shrimp dumplings and spider maki. Spider maki has fried soft-shell crab with eel sauce, and they do it so well.
63 Delancey St, New York, NY 10002
When it comes to getting sushi in Chinatown, go across Grand St from the Tenement Museum, and there sits Douska. It’s a snug sushi spot perfect for a culinary experience like no other. Chef Koji Kagawa, who has trained worldwide from Peru to Dubai, brings customizable hand rolls to New York, and we are thankful for it.
Choosing Douska, you have an extensive menu of sushi, hand rolls, sashimi, and other fun additions at reasonable prices. The hand rolls come in sets or separately with traditional salmon and tuna or more luxury options like wagyu with or without uni.
69 Leonard St, New York, NY 10013
After an afternoon of art browsing at the Salomon Arts Gallery, head up Leonard St for a high-end sushi dinner. Shion is open Monday to Saturday for dinner only and features a 12-seat counter for omakase headed by Tokyo-trained Executive Chef Shion Uino.
This is a higher-end sushi restaurant with higher-end prices, but the quality does match the price tag. My preference was to spend the money for omakase, but the Homakase preset combos include seven to 12 pieces of nigiri and a roll. The fish is fresh, and the skill at preparing is worth the money if you can afford it.
24 Peck Slip, New York, NY 10038
Next to Peck Slip Plaza in the seaport district, not far from the banks of the East River, SUteiShi is a cool sushi spot with indoor and outdoor seating. Indoors, the restaurant is a black and red color scheme that speaks of modern design, and outdoors there are the same colors but more natural. It’s a nice contrast between environments.
They have a big menu with unique fish for sushi and sashimi at more reasonably priced spots. Try their fluke and kanpachi, Hawaiian yellowtail. My favorite was their signature SUteiShi Pearl, an eight-piece specialty roll with fried oysters, cucumber, and a zingy, spicy mayonnaise.
140 W Houston St, New York, NY 10012
With a sleek, modern, and exciting design, DOMODOMO, with two locations in Chinatown and Jersey City, is a feast for the eyes and the stomach with wood-based minimalism and clean lines. Facing W Houston St, the restaurant is guided by Chef Brian Kim, a Culinary Institute of America graduate with over 15 years of experience.
Choosing from the menu for my visit was easy for me, and that’s because DOMODOMO has fantastic chef’s choice sushi sets that offer a collection of their best in a quantity that I shouldn’t eat all at once, but I probably will. The sushi and handroll set gives you eight pieces of assorted sushi, and then I picked two handrolls.
14 Mott St, New York, NY 10013
Technically a ramen shop, Ajisen, with over 700 branches worldwide, also offers some sushi. It’s worth heading to their location not far from Columbus park. Ajisen also has a location in Chelsea if your travels bring you to that side of New York.
Ajisen’s plentiful menu and plain decor make it a great place for takeaway or to bring non-sushi-loving friends. Their ramen is delicious with rich, white soup, and it’s clear that’s been their focus, but the small amount of salmon and tuna sushi and hand rolls were well made with fresh fish and quality ingredients.
The fun in finding exciting sushi spots in Chinatown is exploring. The excitement lies in the fact that it’s such a simple dish—just rice and fresh fish well prepared by a variety of highly trained chefs.
Of course, there’s more to Chinatown than just sushi and hand rolls. If you’re tired of sushi and more in the mood for other Asian options, consider checking out our 23 Best Restaurants in Chinatown article for surefire places to check out while you’re visiting.
Have we missed a restaurant that makes the best sushi? Please leave us a comment, and we’ll check it out!