40 Carmine St Ste 40, New York, NY | Directions 1001440.729994 -74.003256
Neighborhoods: Downtown, West Village
sushi from hell – I love sushi. All kinds. It really doesn't matter. Give me some sticky rice, semi decent fish, and seaweed and I'm happy. Hell, I'l even eat that organic brown rice cardboard sushi from Whole Foods. I'd prefer mediocre sushi any day to Italian or Chinese food. That's why eating at Yama was such an important milestone in my life. Yama managed to create a yard stick that separated my love for sushi, from inedible garbage.
Now being from LA I've never had much respect for NY sushi. New Yorkers rave about Blue Ribbon sushi and Bond Street which in all honesty wouldn't survive more than a couple months in the San Fernando Valley. Whereas in LA we actually care about the taste of the fish, New Yorkers still need cheesy Disney Land like Japanese decor and lame boat presentations to enjoy their sushi. That being said, I lived in NY and love sushi and thus had to eat it.
My roommate and I were walking down Bleeker street one day and stumbled upon Yama. It looked nondescript and busy enough to warrant a try. We quickly learned Yama has a special strategy for its embarrassingly disgusting fish selection: spicy mayonnaise sauce. Now I actually like spicy mayonnaise sauce. It plays an integral role in the development of non-Japanese style sushi and I have embraced it whole heartily. However, at Yama, they take this sauce to a new level. Every single roll on the menu is pretty much bathed with this sauce to the point that you can't taste anything but the mayo. Eel avocado roll with mayo, tuna with mayo, salmon with mayo, albacore with mayo, shrimp tempura with mayo. After a couple rolls I needed a nap to just digest all the white goo. Now you might be saying "Come on, just order the sauce on the side." Good call and that's exactly what we did. Needless to say, the sushi was so bad that after our soy sauce failed to disguise the fish we turned to our mayo for round two.
Thus, if you like mayo, go to Yama. They have great mayo.
Good food large portions – I always order the sushi sashimi combo and I am suffed in a good way when I'm done. The food is always the same, fresh and plentyful. During the summer they have a hidden patio in the back that is nice and relaxing.
Inconsistent sushi – The first time I went to Yama it was amazing, and I was so excited to have another great sushi place in the city. But I went back about a month later and the quality of food had slipped. It was not terrible, but it lost the quality from my first visit.
Great if you're willing to eat and go – I had a lovely dinner here with friends, big pieces of sashimi were a delight. However, as soon as it became apparent that we were finished eating, our plates were cleared, the bill was served, and we were literally asked to leave so that the other customers waiting for tables could begin their meal!
You're a manager? What a surprise! – I can see management at Yama is not great. If I remember correctly, there was a male manager before. Anyway I had a little problem about reservation and tried to talk to manager. She wasn't taking care of the problem that she made instead she tried to ignore me saying that we had a miscommunication! A hostess next to her was helpful. She arranged my table right away. I think Yama is becoming chain restaurant. I used to like Yama Carmine. Food, price, service..etc. Too bad.
Great sushi at a reasonable price – This particular location of Yama is good because it takes reservations. I always take visitors here and go there regularly on my own. You get a lot for your money - the rolls and pieces are big! For desert, the fried green tea ice cream can't be beat.
less is more – I actually order food from here quite a bit but don't usually order the sushi pieces because in my opinion they're just too big! I think there's a school of people who are a little freaked out by big sushi and I am one of them for sure. The pieces are too huge, just doesn't seem right.
otherwise, great fresh sushi + rolls, I really like this place but the sushi and sashimi is cut too big for my liking.
Great Lunch Boxes – Great fresh sushi that's moderately priced. You'll leave satisfied, I love to take my friends here and the ones that have gone have really liked the place and the food.
Service is going downhill – Although the title of my review tells you how I feel about the path of this restaurant, I have dined here many times before and have enjoyed all of my meals. However, the service has been going downhill recently. We had a very rude hostess last week. Go for the food and just that.
Huge Sushi! – My fiancee and I went last night and left stuffed! The sushi rolls were huge, with lots of fish in each, but some of them fell apart when picked up. NOT a problem! The food is still there! The Eel was fantastic, the spicy tuna rolls were great. and the large hot sake is enough for two, easily. We were seated immediately at 8:00pm on a Friday night, after making a same-day reservation.
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