PABU - Boston

4.5
581 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Japanese
Chef Michael Mina and Chef Ken Tominaga bring forth PABU, a modern take on traditional Izakaya-style dining to Boston’s Downtown Crossing neighborhood, located on the second level of the Millennium Tower. PABU presents a contemporary take on Japanese-style dining traditions, using modern technique and presentation to amplify time-honored recipes and market-fresh ingredients. PABU will source the finest of shellfish and seafood directly from New England¹s waterways, as well as from Japan¹s famed Tsukiji Market. The extensive menu of sharable items is ideal for convivial dining ­ guests can choose between Cold Small Plates, Hot Small Plates, Sushi, Robatayaki, Large Plates, PABU Steaks, and Dessert. Not to be missed is Ken Tominaga¹s omakase nigiri ­ an experience of culinary expressionism, boasting beautiful courses of Edo-style nigiri served two pieces at a time - also offered with an optional sake pairing. Combining rustic, old-world Japanese charm with modern, sophistication.
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What 581 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.3
service
4.6
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
77% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was amazing and the service was top notch.

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SW
New England
49 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

The restaurant is cute. The ambiance was quiet. The food was good.

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m
New England
19 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a flight of Japanese whiskey to start, which was fun, and the best things were the miso soup, the oysters, and the soft-shell crab roll. We had a vegetarian friend with us, and there were many choices, thank goodness. The waitress and staff were very attentive, and it was early, so not too noisy. All in all, a lovely experience.

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OT
New England
5 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fresh food and nice cocktails

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SB
Atlanta
9 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

The restaurant has a cool vibe and the food was good. A little overpriced perhaps. Our starter arrived after our entree so something fell through the crack there. I won’t rush back but if you are more interested in trendy than value it’s good.

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OT
Denver
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 3

The food was great but our service was not so good. There was a wonderful man, Michael, who came to our table and was extremel

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love the Pabu experience. Attentive service, freshest sushi possible, and amazing drinks.

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KL
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful experience at Pabu. We were there for my husband's birthday and they surprised him with a nice card and an extra dessert. We had an excellent server- one of the best we've had anywhere in a long time. We had an early reservation in order to make a show after dinner, which made a big difference. It got quite busy by the end of our meal, and service became less attentive. But all staff still made an effort and food was absolutely delicious with awesome recommendations from our waiter. The salmon belly is out of this world! Definitely will be back!

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MH
New England
1 review
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food is always delicious and beautiful, their staff is very friendly, knowledgeable and professional!

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

Our waiter was terrible and so so uncomfortable. We sat at our table with no water or menus for about 20 min until he finally came over and realized we had nothing. The food was subpar. While the sashimi was the real star of the whole meal everything else feel short even the sushi. The squid appetizer was FAR to big and lacked just general taste. It’s texture was rubbery those making it hard to finish the whole thing.

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Solid bar menu with creative choices. Dinner menu is good mix of traditional and creative apps, rolls and dinners. Sushiimi presentation was awesome, and so so tasty. I’ll be back.

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M
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The highest quality ingredients, simply prepared to enhance their natural flavors. Sushi fans should make a special effort to try this restaurant.

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B
New England
7 reviews
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

I’ve been there a few times already and the food is excellent! The menu is very diverse and there’s lots of interesting things to order. I will continue to go back over and over again. You must get the Ken roll.

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d
New England
26 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

The service was the best!!! I’ve eaten a lot of sushi. This sushi was wayyyy undersized, slightly flavor free and way too expensive. We even ordered the oiliest fish there was on the menu and it was barely flavorful. Maybe I don’t know good sushi..but I do know I’ll only go back if work pays for it.

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M
New England
137 reviews
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Attention to allergies stellar.
Food just ok. C+ at best.
Server was very polite and super knowledgeable.
Wayyyyy too pricey for what you get.
32 for a lobster maki is a joke.

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SR
1 review
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was amazing, service was great. We couldn't have enjoyed a better night.

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PL
Denver
55 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fairly empty on an early Sunday evening but as usual wonderful food if a bit pricy-- but the sushi tastes like you are eating at the Tokyo fishmarket so worth it

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TA
New England
2 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

The worst service I have experienced in a long time!

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FT
New England
8 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Great restaurant for a fun night out with the girls, a business dinner, or special occasion with your someone special. The food was really great. The drinks were tasty, BUT they were so slow getting to table. Both water and cocktails were hard to come by. Our waiter was great when he was with us, but wasn't super attentive throughout the evening. Overall the service didn't meet the standards of a fine restaurant, but the food was so good, we're willing to go back and try it again.

Just an anecdote for the waitstaff - don't announce people's drinks to the table. I ordered a cocktail and then whispered to the waiter "no tequila I'm pregnant."A different server delivered the drinks to our table and announced "mocktail" when placing mine. You can imagine the looks I got - and well my news is out. Either the waiter should have told the other server. Or the other server should just know who gets what drink. I wasn't ready to share my news, but was forced by an avoidable drink blunder.

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 3

Awesome food! Uni, Salmon Belly Yellowtail fresh and special. Marinated pears in ginger as a mouth wash incredibly tasting. Service a bit disappointing, ordered ipa beer, served the wrong one, closing at 22 at 22.10 everybody pushed out by waiter’s behavior; not the japanese chef he was extremely ingenious and nice... 2 opposite levels: pro chefs vs naive waiters at first experience.

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OT
New England
5 reviews
Dined on March 28, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 2

Sucks. The fish are not fresh. Do not worse the price

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OT
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on March 20, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

La comida muy regular, el ambiente y el lugar muy bonitos, el servicio aunque amables muuuuy lentos , no regresaría

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Y
1 review
Dined on March 17, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

Serving dishes extremely slow! In addition, service quality depends on how much you ordered!

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L
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

Checked in with the hostess and waited at the bar. We were ignored by both bartenders for 15 minutes. The hostess did not notify us when our table was ready, we went up to the stand to check in after our reservation time had passed and were told it was our responsibility to come to the hostess at the time of our reservation. Food was good, nothing stood out particularly. Our server was great. There are better options around.

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AK
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It has great vibe for a quiet dinner and the servers were overly nice.
Food was also good compared to all the other Japanese restaurants in Boston

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J
New England
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Some of the tables are close together, so if you want a more private setting, choose corner tables with the dividers. The food is fresh and excellent!

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OT
London
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 5

Ordered the Dine Out Boston menu and three additional a la carte items. Everything was kind of underwhelming - they weren’t bad per se , but definitely not a wow for the price they were charging. The fried pork chop was a meh, the fried chicken was a meh, ( I could easily come up with a long list of small diners and casual restaurants that offer better fried meat for a much lower cost ) the Tuna tartar was a bit too salty. The Happy Spoon Oyster and dessert was great, but then again they would be too expensive to not to be. Waited for a long time to try the place and it didn’t quite deliver to meet my expectations.

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OT
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Truly enjoyed the experience. Food was outstanding.

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M
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Good drinks and food but a little over priced for what you get. I would go back for a drink and poke tuna app.

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CJ
New England
7 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Service was excellent. Menu prices are very high compared to value.

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LA
New England
7 reviews
Dined on March 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food! Small plates, you have to order more than one per person. The service was amazing.

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B
1 review
Dined on March 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Delicious food! It took a little bit long to wait.

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HS
New England
7 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 5

Awesome ambiance, nice food though a bit pricy (esp. Dine out Boston menu was not a good value), service was not satisfactory. Still, I like their food.

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SA
New England
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

Sushi is great but other dishes are underwhelming. The mushroom tempura really lacks flavor and the flank steak is over cooked for such a good piece of meat.

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OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious! Highly recommend

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on March 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service was EXCELLENT and the waiter was really careful! Will visit again!

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M
1 review
Dined on March 6, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

There are many nice Japanese restaurants in Boston area, PABU is not going to be a top choice anymore due to their very disappointing service.

My table was sticky, the waiter didn’t clean it properly. He made us wait at least 10 mins before he took our order because he was busy filling water for a bigger table, like 3 times (those people did not even drink their water but he was so busy helping them add more to their glasses) and he didn’t have time to come over?! We literally needed to tell him we finished this course and please bring us the next. :(

Food was good and nice location.

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M
New England
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love how they treat food! We oder the dine out boston menu, $38 with great quality!

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OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

The furnishings are excellent, but the food is just so so

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s
New England
68 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Despite the reservation for the counter, we had to wait for 25 min. A lady at the front said we can have the same omakase menu at a table. No way! Sushi at a table is totally different from that at the counter.
Once we got a seat, we had to wait for each dish from the kitchen before being served sushi. They offered a complimentary dish but we were still not so happy. All sushi were better than I expected using Japanese standard. Next time, we will order only sushi at the counter.

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