If you want to experience the Japanese Kaiseki cuisine in NYC, this is the restaurant. I booked the omakase kaiseki course (which is like the tasting menu), and it was absolutely amazing. I LOVE the appetizers -- each of them was a one-bite size and very tasty.
I didn't expect much from Hakubai's sushi/sashimi, because I know that strictly speaking, they aren't this restaurant's strength. Toro and baby squids were included in the sashimi course, which surprised me (in a good way) and I actually liked them. The sushi was ok, nothing too special but nothing too terrible either. Beefsteak was AMAZING, and the oysters were a good surprise too -- I normally don't like them very much, but I found Hakubai's oysters are very fresh and tasty. With a little bit of lemon juice, they just taste great.
After all those amazing courses, it is true that the dessert was a bit of a disappointment -- I did find that the hojicha flavored ice cream interesting. The mochi dipped in caramel was good too. But the pineapple and coffee jelly was a bit like meh.
Overall, it was a great experience having dinner at Hakubai. It could get noisy, depending on who is dining there (there were some Japanese salarymen sounding somehow drunk in the private rooms); but it didn't bother me.
A very authentic Japanese experience, masterfully executed. Fantastic food and service.
A taste is very delicious. A staff have a good recommend & smile. A restaurant look like quite, clean & beautiful. I am loving to enjoy a dinner in this restaurant. My feeling is stay in Japan.
Disappointing; the food at my local Japanese restaurant is better. The only real taste was “salty”. pork cutlet was dry.
Additionally, the service was lack luster. They did pouring keep water and tea, that was nice,
The sashimi is fresh and excellent. I felt like I was having diner in Ginza, Tokyo. Good selection of sake and sochu. The grilled kanpachi was amazing. I could have eaten that with a bowl of rice for the night but I resisted because I know i had so much sashimi coming. There were lots of choices in the desert menu. I left my other half enjoyed it.
Incredibly feels just like you’re in japan
A serene oasis for a business lunch. Simple beautiful room, amazing servers in kimonos, and fresh and delicious authentic Japanese food. A hidden treasure in midtown.
Sublime flavors, authentic Japanese, great for lunch or dinner
Everything was perfect. My best japonese food experience ever. Professional waitress wearing traditional kimono, kind and efficient. The Shabu Shabu was simply excellent. 100% satisfied.
Excellent food, very refined. However, drinks and the food is very pricy. The atmosphere is authentic and reminiscent of Japan. The sushi and sahimi were succulent as well as the Spicy Tuna Don that I had (very exceptional).
The beef from japan was very authentic and tasty.
Second time there, a special occasion. As always, a beautiful and quiet environment. Exceptional food ((we had the special Kaiseki, unfortunately too late warning for the Omakase), subtle, tasty, diverse) and extremely gracious service.
Hope to repeat soon...
Way too expensive for what you get. The Toro Don was good but not great. We then had the sushi plate (85$) which was a variety of high end sushi (debatable) and it was just lack listur. Given all the sushi spots in the city, I would never go back and spend money here. Also atmosphere is just completely blah. Felt like I was in a cheap buffet restaurant on the old Vegas strip. Sorry to be so critical but I just say it straight.
Hakubai remains a favorite of ours. We like love how they prepare and present classic Japanese cuisine. Servers wear traditional dress which we also like. Our server could smile a little more, as she looked very stern and not warm at all.
Probably the best traditional Japanese restaurant in New York. Having lived in Japan for eight years, I can attest to the fact that the quality of the food is comparable to the best traditional Japanese restaurants in Tokyo.
Amazing , authentic Japanese experience. Everything was so fresh and incredibly tasty.
The word authentic is overused, but for Hakubai it is truly appropriate. It feels like I am transported to Japan. Subtle attentive service is particularly memorable.
Hakubai is always one of my favorite restaurants. I can always count on their food quality and services. The place is also a best place to talk to people for a more intimate conversation. Their lunch box is excellent. My wife loves their Kaiseki dinner if we have time to reserve in advance. This is one of our traditional place to celebrate winter holidays for the family in their private room.
The service was top notch. This was traditional Japanese food, very simple and clean. The food was good, however not worth the price tag. The food was quite overpriced. I'm actually shocked that they can get away with the prices they are charging given what it is you're receiving. I presume it must be the hotel guests, which are likely predominantly looking for something nostalgic (if not comped) or close to what they receive in Japan. I wouldn't return.
My associate had a sushi platter, which he said was very good. I had ordered the Business Lunch ($30), which I found to be rather mediocre, somewhat similar to what would find at the typical Japanese restaurant (where it would probably go for $15 - $18 rather than $30). Service was good and ambiance pleasant.
Just good traditional japanese food... sushis and sashimis etc.
It was a really nice restaurant to go to !!!!
Quiet and the staffs are extremely friendly, food is outstanding !
$13 for a draft 12 ounce Sapporo, $14 for a 12 oz bottle of Kirin...you must be joking. Everything was good, but when you know you're getting gouged it just devalues the whole experience. It's fine to be expensive, but at least be in the realm of reasonableness. Prices for everything...food, not just drinks are at least 25-30% higher than what they be.
Overall, a very pleasant experience, but not memorable. Nothing really stood out, and it was relatively expensive.
Great service and food. Outstanding and authentic dishes all we had. Thank you !
Great service and excellent food. Very authentic Japanese food.
Went there for the third tie with my family and had Okonomi Kaiseki.
Everyone enjoyed the dinner and was all impressed with the quality of the food.
Would recommend to anyone who enjoys great, authentic Japanese kaiseki!
Hakubai is a fantastic restaurant for a traditional Japanese dining experience.
Location, ambiance, venue and ability to pop simply upstairs to Kitano Hotel and enjoy Jazz is great too.
Service staff, presentation and food quality is great. This is a great place!
Really exceptional by all means . The chabu chabu was great . Same as the Tempura . Pricy somewhat but worth it. Thank you chef.
Hakubai at the Kitano is an authentic Japanese restaurant that feels like a piece of Tokyo in NY. The kaiseki ryouri is completely authentic and would be highly rated in Tokyo. Service is also impeccable as only the Japanese can manage. You will pay for this, but if you enjoy this type of food you will find it worth the cost.
Great place for a well done Japanese meal. My guess is that it's supposed to be an experience (food comes out slow..) take your time and enjoy it!
My wife and I are drawn to Hakubai at the Hotel Kitano for special occasions: anniversary, birthday, etc. The food is superb, the service is excellent, and the atmosphere and ambience is authentic. We go to Hakubai when we want to experience a little Japan in New York.
We enjoy the food every time . this is for anybody who want to taste Japanese traditional food.
Excellent quality of the Classical Japanese food, very easy on stomach and carefully prepared. Absolutely worth the cost and love it soooo much!
Hakubai has been serving authentic and delicious Japanese food for decades. Quality, service, friend ambience hasn't really changed at all over 30+ years I have visited. Love the chirashi for lunch. One of the most authentic and creative Japanese restaurants in Manhattan.
it's always pleasure to eat their food. Yet their alcohol price are super high.
quality of the Boston Ebi is very bad. The worst Ebi I ever had
Price is on high end, but this is the quality you can enjoy in Japan.