The Izakaya at Momotaro

4.6
336 Reviews
$31 to $50
Japanese
PLEASE NOTE: We are reopening The Izakaya with a condensed menu featuring our favorite Izakaya Classics, along with the entire Momotaro menu! You read that right, SUSHI IN THE IZAKAYA!! Please feel free to reach out with questions about these changes and see our updated menus for more details.

Check out our new specials! 1/2 priced bottles of sake on Sunday, and 1/2 priced bottles of win e on Monday!

The Izakaya is located on the subterranean level of Momotaro. The Izakaya and its shared-plates pub-inspired menu echoes the Yokocho street scene of Tokyo. Narrow lounge-inspired ‘alleys’ around a central bar bedecked with hand-painted Japanese menus, moody neon lights, and vintage Tokyo street signs set the scene for the Izakaya’s direct nod to Tokyo’s most famous post-war black markets. Dark, energetic, and ripe with expectation, the Izakaya additionally offers a 30-seat bar featuring crafted cocktails, sakes, and a quality selection of Japanese whiskeys.

Support The Izakaya at Momotaro during COVID-19

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
Social Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
Personal Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
What 336 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.7
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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JH
JohnH
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Went to this place first with a friend and took my wife back a few days later. Phenomenal food and service, and an authentic Japanese vibe. Will be back after lockdown 2.0 is over.

BM
BharathiM
1 review
Dined on October 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Just FYI when we went to Izakaya, they had the Momotaro menu (probably because of decreased seating in the main restaurant because of COVID?).
Anyways, I went with my fiancee, and we had a great experience. First of all, they are following the restrictions to the best of their availability which we always appreciate. In regards to the food...
Tako - probably my least favorite dish. Not bad and would probably order again if I was in the mood for octopus. Remember to put on the lemon as it adds to the flavor.
Tsukune - oh my goodness such savory chicken morsels. The sauce with it is just delightful adding just a little bit of sweetness. The egg is always a welcomed addition.
Spaghetti - favorite dish! Spicy, had that classic curry flavor. Pasta cooked to perfect consistency.
Negi Toro - quality fatty tuna roll!
Aburi beni toro - good/interesting combination of flavors and textures
Edomae Anago - great eel nigiri! I think the nitsume sauce was key.
For dessert, we got a Japanese raspberry cheese cake. The consistency of the cake was light and fluffy. Definitely worth a try!

S
vipSkat19
Atlanta
8 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience as always and our server was fantastic recommending items new on the Menu.

IX
IXITHI
Memphis/West TN
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Momotaro offered a wonderful food and drink selection, and even given the current Covid situation the staff provided amazing service and a keen eye to detail in hospitality, cuisine, and liquor.

D
vipDra17
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love the small dish style of food here. The fish quality of the sushi is amazing but there's also so many hot and cold apps to choose from. The burger is particularly good if you're looking for something larger.

H
H123aa
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2020
Overall4food4service2ambience3

Server took a while to take our order. Food was good. The shrimp pasta only had like two pieces of shrimp tho lol, and the sushi at arami is slightly better

JA
JAWS
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Great food, but dang pricey.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing experience!!!

s
slvopentable
Chicago
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2020
Overall2food4service2ambience4

IF YOU WANT TO DINE:

Go wait upstairs for Momotaro. Don't wait or reserve here in order to not wait. There's no real 'server'. The bartender was on double duty but was on the computer the whole time. Of course, he was extremely apologetic after we requested the manager to be seated upstairs for lack of service.

Non-exaggerated timeline:

seated - then 30min of no service/taking order - then 40min of waiting for food.

Waiting for food is acceptable but 30min of wait time to place our drink/food order? Lucky we had much to talk about that 30min flew by until we noticed, but that speaks volumes about the restaurant's merits. To be fair, the manager really made sure that we were regularly checked in and schlepped around the less than ideal bartender/server. Boka is truly lucky to have her as the manager, but until everyone gets it together we will continue to wonder why Izakaya shouldn't be an extra dining floor for Momotaro with much more streamlined operation.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was amazing and our server Damen was the best!

LD
LauraD
1 review
Dined on September 21, 2020
Overall2food5service3ambience4

My boyfriend and I love going to the Izakaya because of their burger. We both agree that they have one of the best burgers in Chicago and so we made a reservation for 5 pm and arrived exactly at that time. Before you enter the building they have a staff member outside to check you in and take your temperature. We have no problem with these measures as we understand the times we are in. What ruined our experience was having to wait outside for 22 minutes before we could even get seated. The restaurant opens at 5 and we went on a Monday knowing that the place is usually not busy. The employee just kept telling us that “they were still getting things ready” and thanked us for our patience. Finally we were told we could head inside to find out that only one other table in the Izakaya was taken and there were two other hostesses that could have seated us. In other words, there were plenty of employees that could have seated us within a reasonable time. We could not understand why we had to wait for so long. To top it off, while we had been waiting outside we saw other people that got there after us get seated in the upper level restaurant. It just didn’t make sense to us how the busier upper level had people being seated faster than the lower level which was almost completely empty. During our wait we noticed two other women that got there shortly after us were trying to meet their party that was already seated at the Izakaya. They were totally compliant about getting their temps taken and were still asked to wait until someone could seat them. After about 15 minutes someone from their party came up and told the host that they were there to join him and the host still didn’t want to let them down, stating that another host would show them to their seats shortly. This system does not make sense and it makes patrons want to not return. There’s no reason why in a business that had so many employees visibly free to make their paying customers wait for so long.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Great service. Great food. Great drinks!

CV
ChicagoVanessa
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We came here for a birthday family dinner and brought our baby with us. We were seated promptly and given a great area where the baby had plenty of space and was comfortable. Food was delicious and our questions were promptly answered.

s
seanathonr
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The sushi was very fresh and the food that we got was amazing. Every bite blew us away and we will not hesitate to come back. Our favorite dishes were the Jidori Chicken Oysters and the Alaskan King Crab. Our server David recommended the cocktail "Monk's Journey Continued " and it was amazing.

A
Aaron
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service, really friendly and helpful. Food was amazing. Ambiance was really nice in the Izakaya, very on-theme. COVID protocols were top notch, and enforced. Will definitely go back.

g
ghazalb
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

We are frequent visitors of Izakaya. We had a reservation for our anniversary and drove all the way over to the restaurant to find that it had closed two days prior. The staff didn't even have the decency to call us and notify us about this closing. I simple message would have sufficed so that we wouldn't have to waste so much time.

CD
vipChuckD105
Chicago
101 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience3

We love Momotaro - and we have been to many Izakaya in Japan. But during Pandemic 2020, Izakaya is just an overthrow room for Momotaro. It does not have any indpendent culture nor does it have the activity that you normally associate with an Izakaya. That said, we were very grateful to have the table for our celebration when the outdoor and main dining rooms were full.

A
Anna
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Went for a friend's birthday! had great service and great value. Loved the ambiance as well - would highly recommend!

DD
DaveD
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Super cool spot. Comfortable atmosphere with really excellent variety of small plates from adventurous to familiar.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on March 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Experience was excellent from top to bottom. Our server was attentive, knowledgeable and fun. Will definitely be back!

g
vipghazalb
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Izakaya at Momotoro has the best burger that I've ever had!

SS
SarahS
1 review
Dined on February 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We had a really lovely time at The Izakaya. Every dish was delicious and our server helped guide us with great recommendations.

SM
SMALLPORTIONS
Chicago
22 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience5

The food is really good. We didn’t have a bad dish. The portions are very small though and the restaurant is quite expensive. Our meal for 2, which only included 2 drinks cost $235 (includes tax and tip). That ain’t cheap, ya feel me?

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Went for restaurant week

MK
MackenzieKP
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Total deal for Restaurant Week 2020! Our favorites were the duck breast and of course, the Momo Crunch. Hated our seating though - it was off in the side room and we were on these low stools kind of in the middle. Wasn't comfortable and felt awkward, especially if you're male, there is no leg room. Other than that, the night went off without a hitch!

AS
vipAngelaS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall3food4service3ambience3

We went for restaurant week and had to wait for 40 minutes after our reservation which was disappointing. Food was delicious despite the service chalenges.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall3food2service4ambience3

Went doing restaurant week...the menu was decent but it was lacking uniqueness..the most memorable item was the custard tofu which was great but all else seemed like anything we could have ordered from any other sushi/Asian menu. overall kinda disappointed with the taste and options upside staff was AWESOME however there was confusion over booking on the upper level and lower level...wtf is that all about??

HL
HellenL
Chicago
43 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I always love coming here for restaurant week! We brought our friends this time and they loved the food and the atmosphere! We were warmly welcomed back when we checked in and were gifted extra desserts and another ramen for all of us to share. I highly recommend the skirt steak robata, the pork belly that was on the restaurant week menu, and the kamo (duck). We will be back as always.

JF
JasmineF
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had heard great things and this place did not disappoint! I highly recommend the uni deviled eggs and the beef tsukune "slider". Two people in our party ordered the Momotaro sake flight and loved it. The ambiance is very fun, dark, and intimate. We will definitely be heading back soon!

L
vipLucy
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great value for restaurant week. Food was amazing. One of my top 5 in Chicago!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on February 4, 2020
Overall3food5service3ambience3

Went with a friend for restaurant week. The food was great and a good value. I was disappointed by the service. We waited about 10 mins before our waiter took our order. Finished my cocktail and wanted another but by the time they came again the meal was almost done. Four of the five courses took 2 hrs, at which point we asked for the dessert to go because it took so long. Overall would return for the food but the service left a lot to be desired.

D
jolienD
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on February 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, and vibes!
Most of the menu you can order, and you will have amazing food !

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Perfect place to go out with that special someone!

e
englishbreakfast
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience3

Some of the food was fantastic! Some was disappointing, even at the discounted price.
Unfortunately, I think it’s too loud for me to eat there and talk to someone, much less relax a little. Which is too bad because I love Japanese food so much, and 2 of the dishes we had were fantastic.
IF they had late night hours, it is a place I would go often with friends and industry people in the neighborhood. But it was significantly less busy by 1130, and we were given our check before being asked if we wanted another beer or anything else.

C
Coatlicue
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Food was excellent! Our waitress was excellent! Issue we had was we were seated late and then rushed to leave when we were done.

XC
XiongC
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2020
Overall2food1service3ambience3

So this is my first review in OpenTable. In short, food sucks, at least for the restruant week dinner. I've been to Momotaro before, 4 person $300, it is over priced but I mean....I dont like it, I dont hate it.

I reserved in Chicago Restruant week for this place again since I thought it should be good value. Appetizers is fine, besides the Japanese fried chicken is dry but whatever.

Then the main entree is a disaster. I ordered Sutadon, it was over cooked, the beef slice is super dry and they put excess ammount of very sweet-salty sauce on them, it was almost uneatable.

I didn't call the waiter nor the cheif since I dont want to make it hard for the waiter and I just want to get out of the place.

It was not worth it, trust me.

HK
HelK
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience5

We were there for restaurant week. Food was unhealthier than we expected. Fried chicken, sweet potato fries, fatty pork belly. The ramen was also very spicy and we were not warned about it beforehand. Will not go back.

f
fururu0928
Detroit
3 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience4

Did restaurant week. The food was okay. Some were good but some were okay, nothing impressive. I had better Izakaya experiences. Cocktails were good but also had better at other places around the city. I think it’s overpriced for what you get. The service was great though.

c
vipcheers
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Amazing food. Went for the first time during restaurant week - very busy, the seating was behind the reservation, about 30 minutes, however the staff kept us updated. Will definitely be returning.

D
vipDeee
Chicago
11 reviews
Dined on January 21, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Everything is above average and I'd recommend friends to go and try it, but portion was smaller than I thought (even for 'small plates') which made them feel more expensive than they should have been.

FAQs

The Izakaya at Momotaro is rated 4.6 stars by 336 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

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