1830 Fourth Street
Berkeley, CA 94710Neighborhood:
JapanesePrice: $30 and under
- Dining Style: Casual Elegant
- Website: http://www.iyasare-berkeley.com/
- Phone: 5108458100x
- Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Mon-Sun 11:30am-2:00pm
Dinner: Mon, Wed-Th, Sun 5:30pm-9:00pm
Dinner: Fri-Sat 5:30pm-10:00pm
- Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Japanese
- Executive Chef: Shotaro Kamio
- Dress Code: Casual Dress
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
A word from IYASARE
Inspired by the artisanal ingredients and simple, rustic flavors of his native Tohoku region, chef-proprietor Shotaro Kamio blends the obscure with the familiar for surprisingly extraordinary tastes. Craft beer, wine and sake. Seasonal, locally sourced ingredients. Comfortable, casual indoor and heated patio garden seatingContinued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
IYASARE - Best Restaurants in Berkeley ›
IYASARE reviews from OpenTable diners
183 reviews since May 24, 2014
- Ambiance4.1Noise LevelModerate
fit for foodies (136)neighborhood gem (92)special occasion (91)great for outdoor dining (81)great for lunch (46)romantic (36)hot spot (26)good for groups (14)great for brunch (13)kid-friendly (6)vibrant bar scene (5)late-night find (4)notable wine list (2)scenic view (1)Show More
- Beautiful Food!petalsDined on 9/12/2014Fresh, high quality ingredients; unique combinations and flavor profiles; beautifully plated and served with care. My only suggestion is to continue to develop desserts.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Worth a journeytruemavenVIPDined on 9/11/2014Iyasare is a gourmet adventure. It's reason enough for a trip to Berkeley from Marin.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- minnieVIPDined on 9/7/2014Best new restaurant we've tried in a while. An amazing combination of flavors and textures. Loved it!
- Sublime Cal-Japanese FarecichlisuiteVIPDined on 9/4/2014Like NoCal locavore trends, Japanese cuisine requires freshest ingredients and attention to detail to let those ingredients shine. Iyasare marries both influences to create an experience that is sublime but totally unpretentious. Can't wait to go back again.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Love IyasareYummyDined on 8/31/2014Iyasare is our current favorite restaurant. The bartender is the best. He does everything right. And the food is delicate and yummy. Portions are a little small for the price so feeding a teenage boy is expensive.Special Features:
- WOW!!!GC140FBCVIPDined on 8/31/2014I loved this restaurant! In fact, our entire party of four loved it. We are huge fans of sushi/sashimi and knew that this would be a different experience in Japanese cuisine at IYASARE. The food was gorgeous: beautiful presentation, some unusual combinations. The Raman was wonderful! Since the lunch menu is so much shorter than the dinner menu, we will definitely return for dinner! I would love to try every item on the menu!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2003Dined on 8/30/2014Excellent ramen, lovely sitting outside. Will definitely try it again but still missing O'ChameSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Lives up to hypeThyme2eatDined on 8/29/2014Iyasare provided an incredible, original Japanese based meal. The dishes are surpisingly filling as most of them contain seafood. One without seafood was the vegetable tempura Kakiage which was delicious. Highly recommend the black cod - silken fish in wonderful sauce, perfectly prepared. We had no room to eat dessert but they looked incredible. Service was relaxed and highly professional. Restaurant is beautifully appointed. This is a special occasion restaurant for people who like seafood prepared in a delicate, Japanese style.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Out with the old, in with the new!HawkeyeDined on 8/29/2014A dear friend took me for dinner to the restaurant that was Iyasare's predecessor. I was going to take another friend there in June when I discovered that another restaurant--Iyasare--had replaced it. My initial friend was very disappointed to hear that as it had been a favorite Berkeley destination, so for her birthday this week, I decided to take her to Iyasare to check out this new restaurant. We were both surprised and pleased by the delicious food and beautiful presentation. The miso soup was terrific and the unagi don was the best I've ever had (and I am an unagi afficionado!) It's a bit expensive for lunch, but fine for a special occasion.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- JZeeeeeeeDined on 8/28/2014We had a great experience! Would definitely return. Expensive, but worth it.Special Features:
- Pleasant surpriseSimpletasteDined on 8/23/2014Not sure what to expect from this place as dishes from reviews looked interesting but they were all very tasty and delishesh. They ran out of the pork chop just as we ordered it but the waiter recommended the pork bell as an alternative and it was awesome. The dinner started late and we weren't seated until 20 minutes after our reservation but they got the food out quick. We ordered 7 or so dishes to share and they came in the perfect progression. Overall a great food experience to share among friends.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Absolutely divine!elephattDined on 8/20/2014I've been here a number of times now, and am always surprised by how much better it gets each time. I love that there's a changing menu - although when I find something I love, I am a little saddened to see it gone. But the food is just so delightful - it's clear that so much care is gone into the preparation and the presentation. This last time we went I especially loved the mentaiko spaghetti. I really had no idea what it was going to be like, but my god! It was some of the best pasta I've ever had - strewn with slices of squid, it was definitely my favorite of the night. I love the creativity they have with their food. I could on and on about it. Pricey? Yes, but one of the few places I think absolutely justifies their costs.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2009Dined on 8/19/2014Very disappointing after it appeared in S.F. Chronicle's "100 Best" restaurants. Overpriced, ordinary food. Caveat: I've been there only once, for lunch; perhaps the dinner menu is better. I'd be willing to give it a try.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/17/2014The food was very good, but a bit "chi-chi" - trying too hard to be trendy. The black cod was very good.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Service took way too longWein0422Dined on 8/16/2014Third time here. Each time the food was great. This time food was average and the service took so long my wife went home! They comped me the alcohol, which was average anyway. Unfortunately we won't return
- Creative diningevecamaDined on 8/16/2014I thought the food was inventive and delicious. The tempura was my favorite dish of all but every dish was well worth ordering. I was also impressed with the redesign of the space that OChame occupied in the past. It has a lighter and brighter feel now. I will be returning!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- cielineDined on 8/15/2014our server was not as good and attentive as the one's we had before. and for a special occasion as our 23rd anniversary and reservation booked way ahead of time, we were seated by the door where it was really cold and seemed to be a place where people without reservation were seated. very disappointed. maybe because we have two kids (14 and 10 year old), but i wished that they had given it more thought to make our dining more special.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- hit and miss dishesSffoodieVIPDined on 8/15/2014First time visit did not quite meet our expectations. Sochu Cocktail was excellent and wine by glass selections were very good. Server was attentive but he or the kitchen failed to honor our specific request to only have one dish at a time. We were dining early so it was not necessary to try and rush us. Loved the chicken liver pate special and the steak tartare. Ocean umami was ok but not memorable. What turned out to be the best dish of the night, the agedashi silken tofu, was initially not delivered. We both hated the okonomi pancake,a mess to look at or eat. But restaurant removed this from our bill. Next time we will probably select a sushi bar instead.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- UCgradUCgradVIPDined on 8/14/2014The food at Iyasare was a bit disappointing. The ingredients were good, but the taste wasn't memorable. My choices were severely limited by my own dietary issues so I wasn't able to order some of the items that sounded most appetizing. Modifications needed to be made in what I did order so that I could stick to a gluten free diet. Our waiter was very helpful and knowledgeable, helping me make choices that fit my needs. The ambiance of the restaurant is lovely. I probably won't go back because I'm just not a good fit for this restaurant.
- Only one try so far...GloryDined on 8/12/2014I've only been for lunch, enjoyed my tempura & Gewürztraminer, would go back, but would need more visits to be definitive.I would recommend this to a friend.
- Special PlaceHatladyDined on 8/8/2014I have had two dinner meals at Iyasare, and have enjoyed them very much. The first time I went was on a week night, so it was quieter, but even though the second time was a Friday night and much more crowded, the food and service made up for the extra noise. I think the food is outstanding and full of interest and pleasant surprises. Have felt well cared for by the wait staff, too - they don't miss anything. I highly recommend Iyasare.Special Features:
- Amazing fusion!AdrimacDined on 8/7/2014This Japanese restaurant loves to put twists on the traditional dishes from Japan, like tempura fritters made from corn and okra. Very delicious and different. This is a great restaurant to go to if you want some good food with unexpected flavors. It's better if you go with a friend or two to share the dishes so you can order many to give you chance to taste it all.Special Features:
- Excellent DiningDiappointedVIPDined on 8/6/2014I have gone to Iyasare twice, both for special occassions. Both times, my experienc has been wonderful. Service and food are consistently excellent and cocktails are great. Servers are very knowleable about the dishes and give great recommendations. This restaurant has now become one of my favorites and I cannot wait until our next dining experience at Iyasare.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Always ExceptionalSirLoinofBeefDined on 8/4/2014This was our fourth visit and we continue to have a superb experience every time. Since the menu changes often, I can only say that you can't go wrong with any dish. It's Japanese but with a creative California fusion style. And they have a wine and Sake list that is very well matched in flavor for the food.Special Features:
- Solid Fancy RestaurantOpenTable Diner Since 2006Dined on 8/3/2014Would definitely come back here for a special occasion. Dishes were extremely fancy, well-plated, and delicious. Service was solid, but they did forget our last dish. Fortunately, they deleted it from the bill and gave it to us in a to-go container - very classy move. Ambiance is nice, but somewhat strange chandeliers.Special Features:
- yummeeDined on 8/3/2014Delicious food in a lovely setting in the middle of a vibrant neighborhood shopping area. Staff is very pleasant, the ambiance calm and understated. Noise level was moderate and the subtle décor very pleasant. I have always found the presentation of Japanese dishes a little disjointed. possibly because I have no clue as to the order in which dishes should traditionally be served. I found this also to be the case at Iyasare. This said, all the dishes were beautifully presented and delicious regardless of when they were served. We will be back.Special Features:
- A tad blandshellechDined on 8/2/2014The dishes were beautiful and interesting sounding, but were surprisingly bland. Certain elements were delicious, such as the red peppercorns on one dish, but didn't blend together as a delightful whole. Two dishes had amazing broths that didn't permeate the main event (cod in one case) and without a spoon to slurp it up or construct an integrated bite, was sadly left pooling on the plate. We wanted to love this place, but left disappointed.Special Features:
- Felt rushedlovesoupVIPDined on 8/1/2014We had a reservation for 7:45 but our table was not ready until about 30 minutes later. However, that was not a problem for us as the host kept us informed that the patrons had paid their bill and were just lingering over conversation and he gracioulsy seated us at the bar. Cocktails were fantastic. But, once seated, our food came very quickly and we felt pressured to leave by our waitress...perhaps she felt compelled to make up the time lost by the previous lingering guests. My food was great (beet marinated trout and then scallops) but orders by others in the party were not memorable.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Iyasare pleasesOpenTable Diner Since 2004Dined on 8/1/2014My daughter and I enjoyed a leisurely lunch on the patio. The peach salad was perfect. The miso/ramen noodle dish was delicious. The tea selections were lovely as was the green tea ice cream.Special Features:
- Unique japanese foodLovetoeatDined on 7/27/2014Very good and interesting combinations. I've been here for lunch and dinner. Lunch was nothing special. Dinner was very special. Portions could be a little larger.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2005Dined on 7/18/2014Arrangements, food, service all first rate. Special thanks to Aaron, our server. who made the evening particularly enjoyable.Special Features:
- Maybe an off night?ClaudiaDined on 7/16/2014It's a beautiful restaurant, but the dismissive service and uneven but excessively precious composition of the dishes made it a less-than-ideal experience. We had the ahi, which was the best dish we had. The fish was fresh and the accompaniments were pristine. If everything else had followed suit we would have been thrilled. The vegetable tempura is really a frittata and while the flavors were good it was oily. The fish poached in oil was delightful one half of the filet, and the other half was mushy to the point of being inedible. The waitress plunked the dishes down, and picked them up without addressing us any more than she strictly had to. Not rude, but we felt invisible. The sparkling sake was delicious. Maybe it was an off night.Special Features:
- DeliciousfoodiebythebayDined on 7/14/2014My girlfriend and I celebrated our anniversary in a vibrant yet intimate local hot spot. All of the dishes were delicious. My lovie raved about the Brussel Sprouts. It was a taste explosion. I loved the seafood pancake with the flakes. We will definitely come back!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 7/14/2014Food was good, but not great. Pricey and noisy. A bit pretentious. Limited menu.Special Features:
- Superb birthday dinnerjrose8691Dined on 7/13/2014We had an exquisite dinner at Iyasare. The food was delicious and beautifully presented. Entrees were large and we could have share one entree -- with a couple of small plates in addition. The service was leisurely, but we appreciated not feeling rushed and enjoyed having time in between courses to talk. Salmon was among the best I have ever eaten. Highly recommend.Special Features:
- The best meal ever!EvieeatswellDined on 7/12/2014The food and service were great! I went one day for lunch and truly enjoyed the meal. I returned the next evening with friends for dinner. The food is creative, flavorful, cooked to perfection.... wonderful. Portions very satisfying. the knowledgeable wait staff recommended the most ideal wines to complement our wonderful food. Saturday nights can be quite busy. We came on time for our reservation, but ended up waiting for almost 30 minutes for a table. They were very apologetic and considerate,offered us sake and made us feel welcomed. We ended up being the last party to leave at the end of the evening. They never rushed us or made any comments or gestures to move us out. This place now tops our list of favorite restaurants!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Pass the seasoning and the cameraMonsieurBongout1Dined on 7/12/2014beautiful presentation but flavors underwhelming and a bit pricey. someone said that there are only 2 great cuisines in the world, french and chinese, and all other good cuisines are based on their sauces and recipes. i rather agree. i love japanese--- and mexican, but generally find that the most simple, cheapest versions are the best; the more you add in ingredients, the worse it is.Special Features:
- JanSDined on 7/11/2014We will not return to Iyasare!!! We waited 20-30 minutes for a table and were not happy with the food.
- Good, but beware of specials!eatouttoomuchDined on 7/10/2014Prices here are generally reasonable, but the server failed to mention the price of the specials, which, in our case was $48 (!)... It was good fish, but we definitely would have opted for something else had we known the price.Special Features:
- extremely noisy, food oknycsfdinerDined on 7/5/2014The food at Iyasare relied too much on fusion methods rather than highlighting the wonderful aspects of Japanese cuisine. That being said, almost all of our dishes, we had 11 items between the four of us, had moments of tastiness but lacked the complexity of really good food. For example, the tempura dishes (we had both) lacked crispness and the sauces were bland instead of offering the umami flavors. Part of the issue is that Iyasare blends Korean and other Asian flavors/sauces with the Japanese that produce unbalanced and average dishes. If you want real Japanese food , I can't recommend Iyasare. In addition, we visited on a Saturday night and the place was a mad house. We could barely hear our friends at the table it was so loud.Special Features: