After watching a Broadway show one Saturday evening with three friends, we collectively decided we were hungry but didn’t want a heavy meal at nearly 11:00 pm. We decided on izakaya because of the variety of tapas dishes as well as drink menu. Donburiya is located at West 55th Street between Broadway and 8th Avenues, and it is convenient from both Broadway theaters as well as Lincoln Center.
We started with a pitcher of Sapporo for $18 which is quite reasonable considering the price of a single bottle, and then each of us ordered our favorites to share. I ordered menchi-katsu (a breaded and deep-fried ground/minced meat cutlet) and hokke shioyaki (salt grilled Atka mackerel). The others ordered ham katsu, assorted sashimi, and Negitoro (minced raw tuna). The taste of this reminded me of a ‘mom and pop’ izakaya restaurant often found in small neighborhoods in all over Japan. Another dish popular with the group was potato salad. It generally has cucumbers, carrots, and onions mixed in. The crunch of the fresh vegetables combined with the creaminess of the mashed potato was absolutely perfect. I think I could have ordered several more servings, but I decided to save that indulgence for my next visit! Donburiya definitely serves home made, quality dishes. As our shime, or last meal order, we each selected a rice ball. I selected tarako which is salmon roe, and the other options were grilled/salted salmon and ume, or pickled plum. While there are many places in NYC where one can buy Japanese rice balls, the ones at Donburiya are the closest to those I normally ordered back in Japan.
The restaurant has a bar/counter, a separate high table/chair area, and regular, low table seating as well. And located only a few blocks both from Broad Way and from Columbus Circle, it is a great venue even if you did not see a great performance beforehand.
Price: $140 including tip and several beverages for the four of us (After theater meal!)
Neighborhood: Central Park South and Columbus Circle
Dress code: Smart casual
Dine Alone: Absolutely comfortable