SUMI Robata Bar
SUMI Robata Bar

SUMI Robata Bar

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.sumirobatabar.com/
  • Phone: 3129887864x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch
    Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm
    Dinner
    Monday - Wednesday: 5:00pm - 11:0pm

    Thursday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 12:00am
  • Payment Options: AMEX,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Barbecue, Japanese, Asian
  • Executive Chef: Gene Kato
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: holds up to 12 people (tatami room)
  • Special Events: New Year's Reservations
    5:00pm - 8:00pm / 8:30pm - 11:30pm
    Menu
    $60 for 6 courses / $80 for 8 courses
    *Tax and gratuity additional
    Complimentary champagne toast at midnight
    P: 312.988.7864
    E: info@sumirobatabar.com

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Huron/Wells
  • Public Transit: Brown line and Purple Line stops three blocks from the restaurant.
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Street parking available on Huron and Wells
A word from SUMI Robata Bar
Welcome to Sumi Robata Bar. Chicago's first true Robatayaki (Japanese BBQ). Enjoy the highest quality ingredients cooked over Japanese charcoal and cooked in front of you! We look forward to seeing you soon.
Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerJapanese
SUMI Robata Bar reviews from OpenTable diners
65 reviews since June 4, 2014
Overall Rating4.3
  • Food4.4
    Service4.2
  • Ambiance4.1
    Noise LevelModerate
85% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (41)great for outdoor dining (28)neighborhood gem (22)special occasion (19)romantic (15)great for lunch (10)hot spot (7)good for groups (6)great for brunch (3)kid-friendly (3)late-night find (3)vibrant bar scene (2)notable wine list (1)Show More
  • ugh
    ChiDinerDudeVIP
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    I don't typically write reviews, but this was really a poor dining experience. Will keep it brief: - stark bright place, no ambience - Sat at counter, very tightly packed - counter chairs are very uncomfortable if you are tall (6 ft up) since you can't rest feet on ground, or if you rest your feet on chair then your knees are bumping into underside of counter - food was SALTY. I don't mind salt, but every item was horribly over salted. At the end my mouth felt like I had been swimming in the ocean for two hours - other than salt, there was no flavor to the food - service was lackluster Very disappointing experience, would never go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Good food, good service
    Goodfood4mepls
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    We had beautiful sea bass in a wonderful sauce; tender meat to cook on the robata and nice warm sake. We were there in an informal night after arriving from out if town, and wanted to chat with friends we haven't seen in a while, so it worked perfectly since the restaurant isn't loud, neither too fancy; food is good and the location is right in the area of many other good bars.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • superb food
    Ducati1198s
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    Food and service met my expectations. Only con is dinner for two can get pricey especially with drinks.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cosborne
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    We had to wait 30 minutes to be seated even though we had made a reservation and there were 3 tables unoccupied. The saki and beer selection seem a bit overpriced. Nice outdoor patio area.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Not impressed
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012VIP
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Portions are very small but tasty. Very expensive and for the amount we paid we were still hungry. We will not be coming back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Taste is exactly Japanese
    KenShima
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    All KUSHI YAKI was very good taste. These are reminded me Japan.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food
    jc123
    Dined on 8/7/2014
    We had excellent service, an outdoor table on a gorgeous night and fabulous food. The dressing on the Mizuna salad was awesome. We had the steak on the stone and sea bass both were outstanding. We loved the soft shell crab special and the lamb. The chicken thighs on a stick were only normal nothing interesting. We were not adventurous enough to try the gizzards or heart. Robata is sort of Japanese tapas - so everything is small and designed to share. Great place!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Foodie
    mfix
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    Unbelievable food experience. Went omakase and they did a fantastic job. Bartender at downstairs Charcoal Bar was very friendly and make great cocktails.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Highly Recommended
    Cecilu
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    I had read a review in the Tribune when the restaurant first opened and had this on my list of places to go. Finally made it this week. We sat outside, which was very cool, but kind of wish we sat inside as it appears to be great entertainment. Great food, great service. Lower rating on food is not a reflection of poor preparation, but rather my personal taste. I can still taste the 100% Wagyu beef cube, which was a special, expensive, but amazing.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great experience. Delicious food
    Liob
    Dined on 7/23/2014
    Food is really great, service is nice and kind. Dishes comes one after another which makes the experience perfect. Must try : asperagus, beef slider, yakitori & gyoza ...
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Terrific both for lunch and dinner!
    eaterholicVIP
    Dined on 7/15/2014
    I was at Suni Robata Bar for two lunches and one dinner. Will go again. Great, professional, knowledgeable, and friendly service. Terrific interior. Lovely patio. And, of course, the food: everything from the miso soup, through the salad, the whole bento box concept, the raw mackerel, the duck, the chilean sea bass... to the soy panna cotta and yuzu curd desert is just perfect. Favorites:mizuna greens, duck breast, and jidori karaage. Least favourite: lamb -- too fatty, but still very tasty. Bottled cocktails are delicious... and strong. Loved Dragon's Milk. For lunch -- the ice tea.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • terrific meal
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013VIP
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    A terrific overall meal, certainly among our recent favorites. Nice well-spaced tables in contemporary wooded atmosphere. Very nice and knowledgeable staff – when we said it was a bit cold, they raised the temp. Our waiter’s suggestions were the best plates. The dishes were of unusually uniform excellence in preparation and taste. Not “fancy” but perfectly seasoned to allow the quality ingredients to shine. Looking forward to our return visit.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Can't wait to go back!
    chigrlomnivore
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    I had a great experience. There were so many unique and tasty items to try and items for anyone (vegetarian, carnivore). My friend and I ordered a bunch of stuff and had a great time. I highly recommend this restaurant!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • More than Sushi!
    davocal1
    Dined on 6/30/2014
    This is a foodies delight. I went for lunch and was blown away by the freshness and creativity of this food. It's beautiful inside and out
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • A great find!
    atlosass
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    We went here for a short-notice date-night and we had a wonderful time. Staff was friendly and attentive. It was fun to sit at the "chef's table" to watch them work. They were by no means chatty (which was totally fine), but they were happy to answer questions we had. Cold tofu appetizer was absolutely delicious - I'll honestly never think of tofu the same way. Food off the robata grill was juicy and tasty - I had shiitake mushrooms, skirt steak, & duck. All delightful. Chocolate-filled donut with matcha semi-fredo ("donatsu") was a wonderful way to close out the meal. Highly recommended!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Really good Japanese cuisine
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    Standouts were the tofu appetizer and chicken thigh skewer. I would like to try the hot stone steak appetizer next time. Very pleasant ambiance, sleek and unpretentious.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great as always
    HammerVIP
    Dined on 6/24/2014
    Fantastic as always given the high quality of Gene Kato. Excellent service as the staff was extremely accommodative continuing to serve us outside in the rain under a large umbrella.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Overpriced, but unimpressive
    WorldlyFoody
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    Most dishes were either overcooked and dry (grilled shrimp, chicken karaage) too sweet (burdock root, tofu) flavorless, tinier than my pinkie (but cost $20) or just plain bizarre (tofu tasted like soy milk). At this price, I expect perfection and that is not on the menu ! I've had better karaage at Lawson's or 7/11 in Tokyo. My date and I went around the corner to Union Sushi to fill the void that was left by our experience at SumiRobata. Union was excellent!!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 47 ratings-only reviews submitted since June 4, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.4
    • Food4.5
    • Ambiance4
    • Service4
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 133 reviews are from the SUMI Robata Bar reviews archive.
  • Whole family loved it
    rwtriVIP
    Dined on 6/2/2014
    This is our 5 year old's new favorite place! Don't let that fool you, though -- she's quite the foodie and has been to more Michelin starred restaurants at 5 than I had at 30. This is a legit robata bar. Been to many in Japan, and am excited to have found one that meets the bar locally. High quality ingredients shine through here - if you're looking for big chicago richness with more pork belly than you can shake a stick at, this probably isn't your #1 place. Ishi Yaki is fun; shisito peppers we simple and perfect; chicken thigh was excellent; etc. Will def be on our regular rotation.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Yum
    terilgVIP
    Dined on 5/27/2014
    I had never been to a robata grill before. The food was delicious and inspired. And the bottled cocktails were delicious as well. I look forward to going back again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great outdoor patio!
    Theodore
    Dined on 5/23/2014
    We had a great lunch on the patio today. The fried chicken was exceptional. It was super crispy and not at all greasy. The same with the soft shell crab. The bento box was just okay with the exception of the mizuna salad which was really delicious. We would go back and try their dinner menu for sure to try more of the robata items.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Awesome drink menu
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 5/7/2014
    Game of Thrones drink menu theme and STRONG cocktails in the Charcoal Bar downstairs. SUPER cool and trendy, hidden gem!!!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • CREATIVE Asian small plates!!
    MeaghanVIP
    Dined on 5/6/2014
    The food here is extremely creative! One of my favorite dishes was the Asian "slider" - out-of-the box and delicious. Great place for all different occasions - date, business dinner, mom in town, girlfriend dinner. Went to Charcoal Bar in the basement after, which was an awesome loungey space, with creatively inspired cocktails.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Start to Wknd in Chicago!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/2/2014
    Food was fresh & tasty! Loved the design; simple, earthy, clean/modern decor and a zen atmosphere. Awesome!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Little Too Expensive
    cjl418
    Dined on 4/26/2014
    The food was delicious, the service was great. The problem was that the portions were very small - usually one skewer or juts a few pieces of the item - and the dishes were expensive for the size of the portions. There was a variety of very good tasting things on the menu. I consider it a special occasion only restaurant because of the high prices. We have been to the Robata restaurants that were not this expensive and the food was almost as good.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Still Loving It.
    GaryAVIP
    Dined on 4/26/2014
    Sumi Robata Bar is one of my favorite go to places in Chicago, Chef Gene Kato's grill work is nothing short of outstanding. Evident with the simplicity of grilled asparagus, to the elegance of the Abalone (a special the night we were there). But do not allow that simplicity be confused, these are elements, sourced from the best purveyors to allow you to taste a just a bit of the quality found in Japan's Robata / Izakaya culture. Make sure to try the specials! It was also great to get a chance to try the Charcoal Bar downstairs, Michael Simon is an excellent addition to the mix, we had one drink off the menu and another "Dealer's Choice" both of which had simplicity and elegance that was an outstanding end to the meal.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Great for Outdoor Dining, Late-Night Find, Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Yum
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 4/23/2014
    The bento box meals were delicious. LOVED the sweet potato fries. Wish they did have more of an offering at lunch... really wanted sushi.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very very very good!
    I3ping
    Dined on 4/19/2014
    We've been to many Robata bar in different cites, Hong Kong, Japan, New York city, Las Vegas, Toronto...... This is the best we have.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Find
    LobsterMobster
    Dined on 4/10/2014
    I had not known a thing about Japanese BBQ but figured I'd give it a try. Delicious. And as an added bonus...perfectly seasoned sweet potato fries.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Enjoyable!
    FoodEater
    Dined on 4/8/2014
    This place has a very nice ambience and a decent view of the city from the window. The food was very tasty and the chicken Benta box was amazing.
    Special Features:
    romantic, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • 2nd visit to sumi - not good
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 4/3/2014
    -heat was blasting -salmon way undercooked -savory mochi was so salty it was not edible We stopped ordering and went to Boardinghouse down the street.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Awesome
    tiniVIP
    Dined on 4/2/2014
    Great food, everything was delicious. The BBQ meats had the most aromatic and yummy taste. Plates are really, really small, basically not really even sharable. Sharing for 2 is about the max. We were 3. With that said, do not go if you are really hungry or else you will pay a "small" fortune. I would highly recommend it though. Service was very good,and atmosphere was nice, very fung shei.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Neighorhood Favorite
    JBChiVIP
    Dined on 3/28/2014
    My stomach is never big enough to enjoy all the favorites here. Too good on many levels and nothing else like it. This has been and will continue to be our favorite neighborhood spot though we would go out of our way to come here even if we did not live nearby.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Awesome Authentic Japanese Robata
    ChiMindy
    Dined on 3/27/2014
    I can't say enough good things about this place. The food is AMAZING. High quality ingredients highlighted by simple, but expert preparation - surprisingly hard to come by in a city that loves food so much. We've come here at least 6-7 times in the past few months and it has always been on point. My only complaint is that the service, while friendly and attentive, can also be a bit intrusive as servers are required to offer the chef's instructions for how to eat many of the dishes. This is definitely helpful the first time you dine there, but becomes a nuisance after the 3rd or 4th time you've ordered a dish and just want to carry on with your conversation. Regardless, this is still in my top 5 for restaurants in all of Chicago! Go now!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • SUMI Robata
    BAaa
    Dined on 3/25/2014
    Everything we ate was outstanding. I went with two friends and we shared a handful of appetizers. The greens and sea bass were my favorite. The sea bass is an outstanding experience it is cooked in an aroma of flavors that smell as delicious as they taste. For the main course you choose various items from the grill. The teriyake salmon and the lamb were incredible. This would be an awesome date night and the bar downstairs is incredible. Such a cool spot to grab a drink!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene, romantic, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Surprised
    DesignAngelVIP
    Dined on 3/20/2014
    My fiancé and I dined for lunch, and the Bento Box & Japanese beer were outstanding. Our server was enthusiastic and provided first class service. The interior is gorgeous. It has a very calming ambiance. It's seriously one of a kind for Chicago. The Robata bar chefs are clearly culinary artists. We will be back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, vibrant bar scene, romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always great!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/10/2014
    I have come to Sumi multiple times and every time the service is great; they are very helpful and friendly! The food is just outstanding. The sliders are amazing! One place I can take anyone and be sure that they would love it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Watch out for the weird bar rule
    ckboca
    Dined on 3/6/2014
    They have a lower level cocktail lounge, that serves very good, but very expensive drinks - and they will suggest you go down there first before sitting down to your table in the main floor dining. What they neglect to tell you is that whatever you order down there can't be brought up to your table because they don't serve those drinks up stairs, only beer and sake. So if you are sipping on a delicious $20 single malt and suddenly find the rest of your party is there and wants to start eating - you will have to abandon your drink and go upstairs. Weirdest thing is how they handle challenge to that policy when you press them on its reasoning. They need some staff coaching in that arena.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Outstanding
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 3/5/2014
    I have been 4 or 5 times. every time the food has been outstanding. This time my favorite the sliders were my favorite. i always get the crab which is also very good. This was the first time that we had a dessert - the donutsu - excellent. The bar downstairs which only has 11 seats is amazing - the bartender listened to ingredients that I like and made me the perfect cocktail.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • JUST FANTASTIC
    TGBB
    Dined on 3/3/2014
    This is one of my very favorite places in Chicago.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.