Daikaya Izakaya
Daikaya Izakaya

Daikaya Izakaya

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://daikaya.com/
  • Phone: 202-589-1600x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch:
    Monday - Friday 11:30-2PM
    Sunday: 11:30AM-3PM Brunch

    Dinner:
    Sun/Weds: 5PM-10PM
    Thurs: 5PM-11PM
    Fri and Sat: 5PM-11:30PM
    Happy Hour: 5-7PM Mon/Fri
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Japanese
  • Executive Chef: Katsuya Fukushima
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Between G and H
  • Public Transit: Across the street from the Gallery Place/Chinatown metro station, servicing, Green, Yellow, and Red Line trains.
  • Parking: No
  • Parking Details: Street parking is available around the neighborhood. There are also 3 garages within 2 blocks of the restaurant.
A word from Daikaya Izakaya
Reservations are for the upstairs Izakaya only and not for the Ramen shop.

The Izakaya is a full service restaurant featuring small plates of Japanese tavern fare, as well as a full bar with cocktails, wine, beer, and a large selection of sake and Japanese spirits.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
Daikaya Izakaya reviews from OpenTable diners
229 reviews since May 20, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.3
    Service4.2
  • Ambiance4.1
    Noise LevelModerate
96% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (155)hot spot (77)vibrant bar scene (66)neighborhood gem (64)good for groups (61)special occasion (54)late-night find (39)romantic (32)great for lunch (26)great for brunch (13)notable wine list (5)kid-friendly (2)scenic view (1)great for outdoor dining (1)Show More
  • Not your father's Japanese place :)
    snowbird
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    This is a our second time and we liked it as much as the first. Lots of great small dishes well beyond the standard sushi and sashami. Bargain prices, great service and friendly atmosphere. And you can make reservations on Open Table !!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good, not great
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    My husband and I were a little disappointed. We were hoping for something a little more authentic. When I go out for Japanese I don't want a riff or twist on what could be Japanese food...I want actual Japanese food.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Guilford1960
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    Our first time here. Service was great and helpful. Enjoyed sampling about 8 small plates. While everything was very tasty, several times we were surprised by the presentation of the food....very creative.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • CupcakeWonkVIP
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    Atmosphere is amazing -- great for a fun night out with friends or date.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • SG12
    Dined on 9/3/2014
    The food is truly excellent. The small plates come out very quickly. So, pace yourself.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • SO GOOD.
    Janet
    Dined on 9/3/2014
    i can't stop getting the loco moco here, and my co-worker can't stop getting the pork belly. always so good!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Hated it
    JaneleVIP
    Dined on 9/2/2014
    I don't know why this place got such good reviews. The food was flavorless and we sent two of our dishes back. One item - the eggplant - was inedible. I spit it out in my napkin. I would never go back and wouldn't recommend it to anyone.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent restaurant experience
    SG12
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    The ambience at Daikaya Izakaya is excellent. The decor is charming. The food is outstanding. The service was great.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2012VIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    This is definitely an izakaya - which means food to have with drinks. While the feel is Japanese many of the dishes are far beyond what a Japanese Izakaya would serve - many interesting flavor combination for example roasted eggplant with a lamb sauce. Vritually all of the small dishes can be easily shared by two allowing one to sample more dishes. Desserts which are not a feature in more authentic Japanese spots are notable here - try the black sesame panna cotta - unusual and delicious.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • just okay
    Chilanga
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    Was expecting more ... more vibe, wider selection, better food. My meal was fine - ordered the pork belly with kimchi rice bowl - but it was a bit too salty and the kimchi was mediocre (but I'm Korean and pretty picky about my kimchi); my friends ordered the salmon sandwich (tasty but fish was overcooked), and a salmon rice bowl (no complaints). Had read about the vibe and perhaps there's more at night; but at lunch time, with only a few other tables occupied, it was all a bit lackluster. Willing to go back and give them another shot; perhaps my expectations were too high. I did just return from a short trip in Kyoto.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Each bite a delight
    KsjOmniComVIP
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    Small plates so go only modestly hungry/willing and able to savor the flavors. The eggplant with a lamb sauce, miso soup special, mushroom and tofu, and the salmon were all stand out. Yes I just mentioned everything we ordered! Interesting and dynamic decor, well worth it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Decent Fusion food
    JayC
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Decent food but service was less than desirable. I had reservations for 815 in the evening. We arrived at 805 and was told that they are clearing tables and to please have a drink at the bar. Twenty minutes later after seeing two tables get cleared with 1 seated and 1 open I asked the if our table was ready. The answer was no, when asked about the open table, she replied that they were 'saving it for a table for 3' . After another 10 minutes I was left with ordering from the bar when they finally offered the table to us. While the food was good I do not intend on coming back here again.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best Ramen outside of Tokyo
    Greg
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    The downstairs Ramen bar has the best Ramen I've had outside of Tokyo! The upstairs Izakaya has a different menu and was equally amazing! We had lunch at the Ramen bar twice and the Izakaya once on our three day trip!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food, bad waiter
    DCeducator
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    The food is interesting but delicious. The jalepeno beef tounge was excellent! Our waiter however was horrible. The restaurant was nearly empty and he was inattentive and rude.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Three strikes
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    I was very disappointed. The quality of the food is so-so, at best. The portions are very small. The four of us ordered a bunch of little plates -- octopus, edamame, mini domburi, chilled cucumber, chawanmushi, chicken thigh. Except for the edamame, the amount of everything else was measly. Yet they were not cheap. A small portion of chawanmushi was $7.75 each! The service was fair. The food came out in dribbles, and after the server said we had gotten everything, 10 minutes later someone brought out the two domburi. It would have been ok had the food tasted wonderful. Portions in Japan can be quite small, but when they're tiny and not very good and relatively expensive, that's three big reasons not to go again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Japanese style
    jhornsteinVIP
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Not since visiting Kyoto last year have I had such an interesting and tasty meal. Aside from the excellence of the food, our server, Tom, was fabulous - a really knowledgeable guy who guided us through the whole experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Awesome!
    LAP82
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    This restaurant is truly amazing. We stumbled arcoss this restaurant during DC Restaurant week and we will be adding it to our list of places to frequent. Additionally, our server, Tom was knowledgeable and fun! I highly recommend this restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • my favorite Penn Quarter restaurant
    foodindc
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    This was my third time eating/drinking at the Izakaya. The RW menu was such a knockout. Initially I was disappointed that the menu was different from what was published earlier online, but I loved every dish I shared with my dining companion. The peewee potatoes were so amazing I can't stop talking about how delicious they were. I can't wait for Chef Fukushima to write a cookbook for all the magical, delicious concoctions coming out of his kitchen. I also love their beer selections - especially Jolly Pumpkin and Unioncraft beers. With the ramen shop downstairs and Izakaya upstairs, Daikaya is now my favorite restaurant in Penn Quarter (sorry, Jose Andres!).
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Delicious and Unique
    DrctVIP
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Fantastic food, very different from what you would find at local Japanese restaurants. The service was awesome! Thanks!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Hit or miss (but mostly hit)
    HangrySan
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Amazing: Grilled avocado; Smashed Pee Wee Potatoes, Fried Garlic Good: Miso Salmon Lackluster: “Hambagu” Japanese-style beef hamburger steak; Onigiri rice ball (Abura-miso pork and sweet miso filling) It looks from the way I've grouped these that I don't like Japanese food, but I do! There is surprisingly more umami goodness in the avocado, potatoes and garlic. The hambagu, salmon, and the onigiri rice balls are disappointingly bland. Great sake and killer environment. Plus, the food is basically Japanese tapas, so once you know what you like, easy to order it again. However, there should be more hits. Service was a little slow, but waiter was knowledgeable. Good date spot.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, late-night find, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • santorini
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Food was good, nothing amazing to want to return again. Service was good...host was great, waitress seemed a bit rushed and was always spilling our drinks on the table. she was nice, attentive, but again seemed rushed when she stopped by. Favorite dish would be the grilled avocado.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • inventive small plates satisfying
    Jessica
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Not just a gimmick, these Japanese small plates are truly satisfying and inventive. Noisy, but bearable, and full of energy.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cold Ramen
    BettySoup
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Cold Ramen was great for lunch on a hot summer day.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent!
    districtdude
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    I went to Daikaya Izakaya as part of a group of 4 during Restaurant Week, but we decided to just order from the full menu, which was great with many offerings at reasonable prices. Food - The food was spectacular.The best were (in no particular order) 1) pork and brussels sprout skewers, 2) Japanese eggplant, 3) crab croquettes, and 4) fried garlic. Dessert was also great. Get the soft serve! It's an awesome treat. Service - All of our food arrived promptly and the service was decently attentive. Since we were there during Restaurant Week, it was packed so our server was being pulled in a lot of directions but she did a great job and had good sake recs! Ambiance - Perfect izakaya feel! I would definitely go back and you should too!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Noisy!
    EMA1
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Very noisy. Food was great. Highly recommended. Comprehensive menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great service
    LessThanImpressed
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Japanese tapas were interesting and some better prepared than others. Great service. Overall, a good experience. Will definitely try again and visit the ramen house.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Awesome food and service
    jnm2103
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    The food was delicious and surprising! The waitstaff was extremely helpful and friendly--they offered awesome suggestions, explained things to us, and were generally very helpful. A wonderful experience I can't wait to repeat!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Bad cocktails! Average Good!
    Captain2008
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    We tried the pre-fixed menu. It was quite expansive and good bang for the buck as the quantity goes but was not flavorful food. Overall I would rate it as an average place to eat. Service was outstanding but that was the only high note if the meal.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • おいしい
    Phil
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    My dining experience at Daikaya / Izakaya has always been pleasurable. The menu is fit for foodies and people looking to explore Japanese-centric cuisine.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fabulous!
    TheHawkVIP
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    What a treat to find this wonderful little restaurant in Chinatown. Everything was perfect- even the noise was tolerable because the wait staff accommodated me with a quiet location. I'll be back again and again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Every dish was fantastic
    Abtsofsteel
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    After having an excellent brunch here, I decided to try the 7 course restaurant week menu. What a great decision! Every dish was fantastic and unique. Juicy beef tenderloin cooked perfectly, creamy grilled avocado with perfect accompanying flavors, miso salmon with a pea puree that complimented the fish perfectly....the list goes on. The waitstaff and hostess were also very friendly and helpful. There was a selection of unique happy hour drinks (you wouldn't think red wine and ginger beer would go together, but it does!), and my only negative would be that the drinks are quite small. The atmosphere was very nice, although the 80s and 90s music was a little strange and didn't quite seem to match it. Overall amazing experience, though.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nice spot for a nibble and a drink
    DavidVIP
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    Nice cocktail list as well as an interesting list of Japanese beers and whiskeys. We really enjoyed the crab croquettes, the beef tongue, chicken livers, oysters, and potato chips. The service was fine, but you really go to a place like this for the drinks, food and a vibrant vibe.
    Special Features:
    late-night find, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • JilW
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    We had a delicious meal! Restaurant is super loud though.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Jv
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Tom the server was outstanding! The food was amazing. Very good vibe.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Japan with a US-twist
    Jerry
    Dined on 8/7/2014
    This place is great if you are a foodie or someone eager trying something new. I cannot imagine in either case you won't find things on the menu that want you to come back the next day for more. Most things at Daikaya seem to come with a twist: from the decor and ambiance (cosy and intimate, yet open and sharing) to the food. It offers some traditional Japanese food in a tapas / to share-style. Whereas in Japan many dishes are very delicate and subtle in flavor, at Daikaya, strong flavors can not be avoided. But what a delicious combinations! Assisted with a great sake (rice wine) list, this is a great evening hunt. The food and ambiance wants you to stay way into the night.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good but not great
    HFXXVIP
    Dined on 8/4/2014
    I'm not sure how this ended up on a Washingtonian best restaurants list. It is good, but not that good. The decor and ambiance were top notch, the food was good (but not great). My friend and I had the vegetable curry bowl and the katsu curry bowl. Both were good. The service was friendly, helpful and attentive.
    Special Features:
    late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Pricey but good
    TCinDC
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    The small plates are very small portions and you need to order and spend quite a lot to satisfy a normal appetite. The quality is very good and consistent. The servers are knowledgable and the hand held devise they use makes ordering and settling the bill quick and efficient. I don't mind an energetic and vibrant restaurant/bar scene but this place needs some acoustic tiles or something to absorb the noise pollution , you cannot hear your dining companion talk! I feel it's a good quality place and could be a good value if they had food menu items that were a little more substantial.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ok
    Erbaceous
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Amazing dishes, great space, and definitely have the grilled avocado, among many others!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Big Problems....
    JonC
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    We have eaten Izakaya food in Japan and in the USA and we were disappointed, particularly at the attempts at putting a twist on traditional dishes. The Salmon was well cooked on the outside, raw in the middle. The Kim-Cheese didn't work at all - like a soggy sour sandwich. The tofu and mushrooms was great, but had fish stock (not dashi konbu) in which meant it was unsuitable for vegetarians. One dish was served, and then the server came back and told us part of it was inedible. And why no noodles? Every Izakaya in Japan serves then, and they serve them downstairs? Frustratingly the chef could clearly cook, but the menu was a mess, and they just sent out dozens of Hamburgo pretend Japanese hamburgers, which isn't really Izakaya at all.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Ok food, ok service
    thisisthenickname
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    Food was decent, but nothing special. Good range offered on the menu, but everything was bland and didn't have any flavor subtlety. The server kept trying to upsell us, and to hurry up our eating. "Are you done yet? Are you done yet?" Very annoying.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate