Hidden in the center of Tribeca, Zutto brings some interesting twists to traditional Japanese cuisine. The space has a way of making you feel immediately welcome, with high ceilings and exposed-brick walls and heavy wooden furnishing, including a massive communal table, that makes it feel at once rustic and refined.
The menu is ideal for sharing, divided between an extensive sushi selection on one hand and what it calls “Japanese-American pub food” on the other. The sushi menu features all the essentials you would hope for, as well as some very out-there rolls, such as the Animal (short rib, jalapeno and garlic), and Gulf of Mexico (shrimp tempura, flying fish roe and kaiware sprouts).
The restaurant offers a number of lunch prix fixe options and main course combinations of a wide variety of sushi types, but your best bet may be to ask the sushi chef to show you what he can do and enjoy the parade of excellent fish.
Beyond the sushi, Zutto boasts a delicious ramen menu, with selections ranging from the “tonkotsu” noodle soup (topped with pork jowl chashu, pickled ginger, and scallions) to the miso or seafood. The wasabi shoyu ramen is a strong mix of sweet and spicy that mixes in bean curd, kaiware radish, and shiso.
Another highlight is Zutto’s steamed buns. Ordered in sets of three, these look something like a Japanese taco, with the fluffy bun combining brilliantly with the flavorful fillings. The short rib steamed bun, as well as the pork belly, were both outstanding, and there is a portabella bun, with parmesan crisp and miso mayo for the vegetarian.
Whether your meal is savory, spicy, or sweet, there is a drink on Zutto’s menu to accompany it. The beer list includes three types of Hitachino Nest brews (the red rice ale is a personal favorite), while the sake list covers all levels of dry, sparkling, or flavorful varieties. A number of white or sparkling wines are available by the bottle, as well as red and white by the glass.
Zutto Japanese American Pub
77 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10013