Where to Drink

Where to find the best sake in NYC

From New York’s first sake store to artisanal bars and traditional Japanese restaurants, here are some of our favorite sake spots in NYC.

For centuries, sake has been a staple in Japanese cuisine. Over the years, the rice wine has picked up quite the popularity amongst Japanese food lovers across the globe, and New York is no stranger to this.

So if you’re looking for where to drink sake in New York, look no further. Many spots in New York are filled with some great sake, and we have picked those dripping the best of the lot.

Decibel

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Sake bottles on the shelf, Source: Instagram

Featuring sake cocktails, bottles, and by-the-glass options, Decibel is enclosed in a warm and low-light setting where you will encounter handcrafted wall scrolls, Japanese lanterns, hand fans, and porcelain cats. The Sake Week features a special bottle up for grabs while you can choose a sake of your choice from their vast menu that houses more than 75 types of junmai, nigori, gingo, daiginjo, and other unique varieties. The range starts from a $55 Izumo Green, stretching up to a $170 bottle of Tsukasabotan. But sake cocktails run the show at Decibel and we recommend the Sake Tini made with sake, shochu, and lime juice.

Happy hours - 6 pm to 7 pm.

Location - 240 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003.

Timings - Closed (Monday to Tuesday)
                6 pm to 12 am (Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday)
                6 pm to 2 am (Friday to Saturday)

Satsko

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Sake tasting session, Source: Instagram

Run by a mother and daughter duo, Satsko treats its visitors with Japanese food made from fresh ingredients, and a sake list capable of satisfying even the most coveted sake lovers. Try your hands on the Hakkaisan Honjozo, Kariho Namahage Junmai, Tatenokawa, and Dassai 50, all available in by-the-glass and bottle options. Make the most of this casual laid-back bar, a superb place to quench your thirst for sake.

Location - 202 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009.

Timings - Closed (Monday to Tuesday)
                5 pm to 11 pm (Wednesday to Sunday)

Rabbit House

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Rabbit House’s sake offerings, Source: Facebook

If you are a sake-holic there is no holding you back at this bar. With three kinds of sake flights, you are presented with the liberty of choosing any option from their by-the-glass sake menu. Things get a lot more interesting at Rabbit House as you ruminate on the choices. To narrow things down for you, these are some sake bottles worth glancing at (before you activate your sipping mode), like Cedar Cask Aged, Yamada Nishi, Gozenshu Junmai Ushi Nigori, and Yokigen Yuzu. And, don’t forget to finish off on a sweet note with the Jun Komekouji vintage sake cake that we love to bits.

Happy hours - 5 pm to 7 pm.

Location - 41 Essex St, New York, NY 10002.

Timings - Closed (Monday)
                5.30 pm to 11 pm (Tuesday and Wednesday)
                5.30 to 12 am (Thursday)
                5.30 to 1 am (Friday to Saturday)
                5.30 pm to 10 pm (Sunday)

Hi-Collar

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Sake ready to be served, Source: Instagram

Recently moved to 9th Street, Hi-Collar is a coffee bar by day and a sake bar by night. Finding a table can be tricky at this place, so we suggest you come early. Makiri, Fujuku, Denshin, and Shichida are a few bottle options you can avail along with fruit sake like the Aragoshi Kumi Umeshu, Yuzu Omoi, and Nigori Mango. Pair your sake with a savory katsu sandwich or a sweet hot cake.

Location - 231 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003.

Timings - Closed (Tuesday and Wednesday)
                11 am to 10.30 pm (Thursday)
                11 am to 11 pm (Friday and Saturday)
                11 am to 5 pm (Sunday)
                11 am to 8 pm (Monday)

Sakagura

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Different sake options at Sakagura, Source: Website

Once you find this hidden gem located in the basement of TKO Suites Midtown East office building, it will welcome you in with its traditional Japanese décor. Sake lovers, over 200 varieties of carefully selected sake await you here.

Founded in 1996, Sakagura is a sake destination with various authentic tapas-style dishes and homemade desserts to tag along with the spirit. Go for the Shukka Prix Fixe that features a five-course tasting menu and five sake pairing options if you are looking to go all out.

Location - 211 43rd St B1, New York, NY 10017.

Timings - Closed (Monday to Tuesday)
                5.30 pm to 12 am (Wednesday to Saturday)
                5.30 pm to 11 pm (Sunday)

Izakaya Juraku

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Izakaya Juraku outdoor patio on Lower East Side, Source: Instagram

Before you start pouring the sake down your throat at Izakaya Juraku, ensure to toast your drink in the Japanese tradition by uttering ‘Kampai’, holding the cup close to your nose, taking in the aromas.

The extensive sake list will need some tearing apart if you intend on exploring as many options as possible. Start off with the Lucky Dog sake in a juice box and advance the order with a smooth and refreshing Hakutsuru Chika Sake Cup. The Sujin Extra Dry is great if you are looking for a bold finish.

Happy hours - 12 pm to 8 pm.

Location - 121 Ludlow St, New York, NY 10002.

Timings - Closed (Monday)
                12 pm to 10 pm (Tuesday to Sunday)

SakaMai

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Seasonal sake at SakaMai, Source: Facebook

Offering artisanal food dishes like the wagyu beef hand roll, crispy octopus, and kara-age fried chicken to go with their sake, SakaMai can be found in the heart of the Lower East Side. When you arrive, be sure to check out their sake by the glass and carafe menu. Some bottle options at the bar include the likes of Mana ‘True Vision’, Brooklyn Kura Greenwood Kimoto, Narutotai ‘Red Snapper’, and Kozaemon 40. Involve yourself in sake introductory classes hosted by beverage director Jamie Graves to learn more about the spirit from Japan.

Location - 157 Ludlow St, New York, NY 10002.

Timings - Closed (Monday to Tuesday)
                5 pm to 10 pm (Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday)
                5 pm to 11 pm (Friday and Sunday)

Sakaya

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Sakaya sake store, Source: Facebook

Whether it is in-house sake tasting or expanding the sake experience at America’s first sake club, Sakaya is there to assist you all along. It is not actually a bar, but a shop tailored to the needs of sake enthusiasts and neophytes alike. You might run into several premium sake bottles that are not readily available anywhere else except for the first sake store in NYC. Watari Bune, Urakasumi, and Kotsuzumi Rojo Hana Ari are a few that currently occupy their featured sake list.

Location - 324 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003.

Timings - 12 pm to 7 pm (Monday to Sunday)

Header image - Satsko, Source: Website

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