Umaya

4.3
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223 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Japanese
Umaya, where East meets West in a plethora of Japanese inspired small & large dishes. We focus on drawing from the simplicity of flavor in fresh ingredients, while giving it a Western flair. Specializing on the popular Japanese ‘street food’ - think small 'tapas' style dishes that are easy to share amongst friends & family. Our Izakaya grill features a one of a kind charcoal brick that is imported from Japan & allows for the natural flavors of the proteins & vegetables to radiate.

Umaya elevates the typical 'beer garden' concept with hard-to-find Asian dishes. Our menu promotes friends, coworkers, family to enjoy their time together. We carry a wide array of Asian beer & Japanese Whiskey, complimenting the tranquility of the restaurant. The menu will feature seasonal highlights; however, the time-honored staples will always be available. ‘Umaya’ directly translates to a ‘place that tastes good’ in Japanese; it is a place where you can go
What 223 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.1
service
4.2
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
89% of people would recommend it to a friend
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LP
Washington DC
25 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Japanese fried rice with chicken has a few surprising twists and turns. The good is always delicious.

ED
Charlotte
3 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a great meal last night !! Enjoyed the sea bass , veggie sushi and the popcorn chicken. Don’t forget to ask for extra spicy Mayo - this is the best ! Looking forward to next time - perfect spot for big groups.

LO
Tampa
3 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was delicious, great vibe and good service.

T
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this spot. Great service & great food

JJ
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Umaya is my go-to for sushi in Penn Quarter. The staff and bartenders are friendly and attentive and the food is always fresh and delicious. Never a problem finding a table, whether sitting at the bar, sushi counter, dining room or outdoor patio. In addition to the sushi, the grilled short rib robotaki are not to miss!

JL
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Nice place. Good food. Priced for the area. Overall good.

A
New Orleans
6 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Poor gyoza, curry ramen, rainbow roll and pork belly buns were all delicious!!

KK
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

If you're looking for solid Japanese food at City Center, Umaya is a must try. They do everything from sushi to ramen, and they have seasonal menu that changes every few months. Suffice it to say, it’s exciting to try new dishes, but there’s one plate in particular that you need to try before the end of summer: Chef Nick’s fresh lobster sashimi.

They also have a slew of impressive entrees. Their garlic yuzu kosho lamb chops are a must-try! The meat’s char-grilled and served with different vegetables, which is then topped with a delicious citrus yuzu reduction. However, my favorite dish of the day was their hot stone wagyu beef. Chef Nick cooked the meat right in front of my eyes, and it was so ridiculously juicy!

DC
Washington DC
31 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I was introduced to the seaweed salad and absolutely loved it. I ordered a ramen bowl, spicy chicken as recommended by the waiter and it was delicious, so delicious that my friend I met for lunch actually wound up eating my dish instead of hers.

JD
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time dining @ Umaya. For sure will not be my last. Pretty impressed with quality and freshness of the fish. Also ordered some of their robata items, really enjoyed miso seabass and pork belly robata. Service is decent also. Will be back to try the ramen next time.

AC
Western NC
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

This place was amazing! Great sushi and sashimi, try the pork belly and the lamb lollipops! They are amazing!!!!

MT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 2

This was our first and last time going to Umaya. The service was terrible - too few staff and the kitchen was overwhelmed. Our waiter was gracious and doing his best, but it took forever to place and receive our drink and food orders, let alone request anything extra like silverware or extra beverages given how much he was running around. As for the food, it was frankly hit or miss. All the appetizers, tempuras, ramen, and noodles we ordered were delicious. The donburis not so much so and the sushi quality was very poor. It just didn't taste good or fresh. It was reasonably priced but not enough to go back. And given the number of better eateries in the neighborhood, it would be a waste of time and money to go back.

ML
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Good Spot for just chatting and grabbing a few bites and for full meals too! I went there for a late night snack. Ordered Tuna Tartare- minced tuna & avocado with wonton chips. Tuna was so fresh. Service is also really great! The server left a great impression with her amazing attitude even though it was already later in the evening.

z
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Been coming here for few times already. Staff always friendly and food was great. Sushi quality is good. Must try the live uni.

TG
Toronto
18 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Good atmosphere and good food. I would have liked the tonkotsu broth in my ramen to be a little richer, but it tasted fine. Could be noisy during the week, but was pleasant on Friday night at 6pm. Counter was great for watching the food being prepped.

O
Greensboro
14 reviews
Dined on August 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Japanese. Try the yellow tail jaw on grill. Only have a few each day. Sushi and all amazing. Great chefs behind the grill
Too.

AF
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 1, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 5

Long wait for subpar food

LP
Washington DC
26 reviews
Dined on July 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Japanese fried rice and sushi are great!

TG
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 2

Absolutely horrible service!

We had to wait 10 minutes for the table we reserved- OK things happen. But then we sat for 20 minutes waiting to be initially served. And the only way that happened was by having to flag down a waiter who didn’t seem to interested in serving us - that made us all quite mad. Another waiter eventually came by to take our order.

The food was outstanding. Sushi was fresh and the steak was awesome. They should incentivize their waiters so they could initially service other guests if things are running behind.

k
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Nice location for otakon goer, but waiting area was too small and not well managed. Restroom was filthy :(

f
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Food was very tasty, but seemed a little overpriced (especially for the robatayaki skewers). The place was so loud that it was almost impossible to hear our server speaking to us!

OT
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really wonderful service. The Volcano roll was unbelievably good, as was the Kage appetizer. Would definitely come back again.

SL
New England
3 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 3

We visited Umaya during a larger convention weekend due to the OpenTable reviews, and thankfully we made a reservation. Upon arriving, an outdoor table had just vacated, so we requested this table and waited a few minutes for it to be bused. Two large groups came in during this wait and were told the wait was about 2.5 hours to be seated, despite a good amount of empty tables inside the restaurant. All were confused.

Finally we were brought outside, where we waited a full 15 minutes before going inside twice to inquire about our waiter. After the second time we finally were approached with water, asked for our orders, and told there was generally a mixup but otherwise were not offered anything for the long wait.

The rest of the meal was good; I liked the Dynamite roll but my fiancé was not excited about the real fried rice, and the miso ramen was marked as coming with an egg and mushrooms but neither were present in my fairly standard bowl. And while our waiter came back twice while we were eating, he again disappeared for almost 30 minutes before coming back to provide the check.

The entire time people were coming and going, excited about the location because of the convention recommendations, and almost all were turned away in favor of we don't know what, because it never became so busy inside as to warrant the 2.5 hour seating time and the insane wait at the beginning and end of our meal.

I'm not sure we would try this location again.

JH
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Our server Antonio was very attentive and helpful. We enjoyed our meal and were very pleased with the overall experience.

z
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on July 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Been coming here a few times. Not a traditional type japanese spot. But you will not be disappointed. Really enjoyed robataki. Sushi is delicious also! Will for sure go back!

ML
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on July 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Definitely coming back again! Nice Sushi place in city center area. Fish is super fresh !! If you are the toro fans you should try toro here. The toro just melt in your mouth.

JK
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second time dining at Umaya. Server did a great job recommending Volcano Roll and live Uni. Definitely will be back to try their donburi.

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service! Accommodating and relaxing vibe! Would recommend!

OT
Detroit
1 review
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was great food!!!

CQ
New England
2 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Nice place but service took a while.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 4

I didn’t get my open table points for my second reservation and my experience was completely different so I changed my review.

G
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is a good place for lunch or dinner. Food is very good and so is the service. It was quieter at dinner than a recent lunch.

OT
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had to comeback with a group of Brazilian friends. As we all love Japanese cuisine back in Brasil. I guided them into Umaya and they didn’t disappoint. Omakase, sushi rolls and a lot of robata items. The seasoning on the filet fignon robata was on point. We also ordered a couple of short ribs and they were so tender and juicy we got 3 rounds! We ordered Japanese beers for the entire table and we all tried a different one. Perfect for pairing with what we were dining. Again, I’m a lifer for umaya. Never disappoints and the pricing is just right.

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Everything was awesome, the hostess has to work on her attitude and service towards customers.

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

Hostess was unfriendly and the food took forever to come. The food itself was okay though.

OT
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on July 3, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

The ramen is less than stellar. Nothing bad, just not worth the $$$. For ramen, goto a ramen noodle bar. My friend seemed to have a good lunch sushi special, perhaps higher in value.

JD
Washington DC
96 reviews
Dined on July 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

This was our first time and we really enjoyed the ambience and the cooked meals were delicious. My husband felt that his sushi was a bit on the skimpy side. We would definitely dine there again.

EC
1 review
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Umaya is a true dining oasis in the heart of Washington, DC’s Chinatown neighborhood! With a wide selection of ramen, shared plates, sushi, and other unique Japanese street food items, it has something for everyone. It’s perfect for happy hour drinks after work, a quick lunch in the middle of the work day, or a family dinner on the weekend. Some of the menu items change seasonally which is great for visitors who are looking to switch things up a bit. Their cocktail selection is one of the best in the city with a talented mixologist on the scene.

HM
1 review
Dined on June 26, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Appetizers were good but they can't seem to make their rice bowl well. It was underseasoned and blend. We sat at the bar that's facing the kitchen and there's a weird flickering light in a light box next to the liquor bar. I had to face it every time I talk to my friend and it was bothering me the whole time. The waitstaff was attentive and generally enjoyed the experience apart from this. I wouldn't recommend my friends because I think it's too expensive for not so good rice bowls.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on June 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious and exceptional food

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