The sushi mood strikes unpredictably, like a summer thunderstorm or Steve Buscemi’s acting projects. And, unfortunately for your wallet and the fish in the ocean, that cold tuna yearning only intensifies the longer you wait. If you’re ready to fulfill a sushi mood that doesn’t involve delivery containers and finicky soy sauce packets, you’ve arrived at the right party. It’s sushi and sunshine-themed. From splurge situations to casual neighborhood standbys, here are 22 places where you can eat excellent sushi under an umbrella outdoors.
Looking for takeout and delivery sushi near you? Check out our guide here.
The fish at this Harlem spot tastes fresh enough to make a sassy quip at you before you eat it. Stop by their sidewalk seating for a sushi set for around $30 or a wide variety of rolls. Just know that Yuzu isn’t accepting reservations over the phone right now, but you can book a table through their website here.
Uotora is the sort of neighborhood sushi spot that should be included on real estate listings as a reason to move to Crown Heights. They only have two tables for outdoor dining right now, and you can call 718-513-0724 to make sure you get to sit at one of them and eat a fatty tuna roll or a sushi set for $28. If they’re taken, you can always order something to-go.
If you’re used to some of the more theatrical sushi around NYC, Douska’s handrolls might appear to be wearing their birthday suits. But that won’t matter once you experience the way the fresh yellowtail, a few rogue scallions, and warm vinegary rice come together in a little hug of crispy nori without any sauteed tomato or fried taro. This LES spot has a bunch of tables on their sidewalk space on Delancey Street, and it’s set back pretty far from the street.
Another option for outdoor handrolls is Nami Nori in the West Village, which serves things like scallop in XO sauce and lobster tempura in taco-shaped nori. They’re taking dinner and Saturday brunch reservations up to one week in advance, as well as holding a few tables for walk-ins. During lunch, you can order takeout from Nami Nori and sit at one of their tables on a first come, first served basis without waiter service.
Looking for a high-end sushi option to apologize for something you said to your partner after months of sharing the same desk? Shuko in the East Village has three outdoor tables available where you can hang out with some spicy trout rolls and toro sashimi. They’re only accepting walk-ins from Tuesday to Saturday from 3-8pm for now, and you can see their menu of sushi sets, and a la carte rolls here.
Please meet the newest outdoor sushi option on this guide, Maki Kosaka - a casual offshoot of a fancy omakase spot called Kosaka on West 13th Street. This Flatiron spot specializes in Makimono sets with onigiri, maki, and what they call “grab sushi,” which comes with separate nori sheets that you use to scoop up things like red snapper topped with miso-wasabi sauce. They have maki roll combo options for under $30, and the quality of fish is better than what you’ll find at most neighborhood spots in the area. You can stop by their outdoor area for lunch or dinner any day except Monday.
If you want to try some red snapper sashimi high-up, you can check out the rooftop dining at Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar’s Columbus Circle location. They’re taking reservations online through their website here.
If you’re looking for a more casual experience on the Upper West Side than rooftop sashimi, go for Momoya. They offer a huge variety of rolls and a la carte pieces like Japanese mackerel and octopus, and their sushi and sashimi sets are all less than $35 - unless you get a $150 party platter, which is a very much option. You can also call 212-580-0007 for pickup or delivery.
We like this Park Slope place because of how relaxed it is, and the fact that there’s a specialty roll named after the song “Rolling In The Deep.” Technically this place is in Park Slope, but you could wave to someone in Gowanus from their sidewalk. It’s calm enough for a very casual date with your quarantine lover, or dinner with your kid.
Sushi On Jones beat everyone to the sushi-with-a-warm-breeze thing, since they’ve been operating an outdoor sushi bar for years. Each omakase seating here lasts 30 minutes, and you can choose between a seven-piece option for $35 or 12 pieces for $58. There are also a la carte pieces of sushi and maki roll combinations available, in case you like to be in control of your own destiny. Just know that the Bowery location isn’t serving any alcohol at the moment, but the West Village location is.
The sidewalk seating area at this Prospect Heights spot is open between Tuesday and Sunday from 5-10pm. They have a bunch of different rolls like broiled eel with shrimp tempura, and you can grab a sushi set for $25. Check out their menu, or place your order for pick-up or delivery directly through their website here. You could always escort your sushi set to a shady spot in Prospect Park.
Pink Nori in Astoria has about a half dozen tables set up in front of their restaurant on 30th Avenue. This spot is known for affordable sushi and Japanese small plates, including a sashimi combo platter that comes with 15 pieces for $22. They’re also running some lunch specials, as well as Happy Hour when beers and sake are $3.
At Bushniwa in Bushwick, you’ll find reasonably priced sushi and sashimi that tastes like it should cost more than it does. This is a good place to order a combo for less than $30, and split a bottle of sake with someone in your quarantine social pod.
If you’re looking for an upscale omakase experience outside, know that this great UES spot is offering two different sushi omakase options right now: a $95 option with 12 pieces and a $135 option with 15 pieces (both come with an appetizer and a dessert). While Sushi Ishikawa isn’t strictly requiring reservations, you can make one online to guarantee a spot for a 6pm or 8pm seating on Tuesday through Saturday.
Sushi Katsuei is another one of those best-in-the-city sushi experiences, only their $70-ish omakase is slightly less expensive than those of the higher-end sushi spots. Both the West Village and Park Slope locations have a few outdoor tables, and you can make a reservation through their website online.
You can also check out the Park Slope location of Sushi Katsuei for omakase and a la cate pieces under a nice umbrella. Call 718-788-5338 or go online to make a reservation.
Sushi Dojo set up a bar area as well as table seating in front of their spot on 1st Avenue in the East Village. This neighborhood staple is little pricier than your average casual spot, but the sushi here is also good enough to make you consider spending the majority of your money on raw fish. They’re only accepting reservations via text at 929-389-9434.
Suzume is ideal if you want sushi, but you’re with someone who doesn’t. The menu at this casual Williamsburg Japanese restaurant has everything from tuna rolls topped with fried potatoes and cucumbers, as well as options like sticky ribs, poke, and spam musubi (and lots of drinks). You can eat outside between Wednesday and Saturday from 4pm to 9pm, or order takeout by calling 718-486-0200.
This Soho institution is somehow a great place for both sushi and burgers, and you can order both if you visit their outdoor dining situation (and for pick-up and delivery). If you need some shrimp cocktail, a 40-ounce ribeye, or some chicken fingers off a kids menu, they have those things as well.
This is the same 30 minute outdoor situation as the NoHo location, only it’s on West 10th Street and there are slightly fewer sidewalk seats. You can book your reservation and check out the menu of omakase and a la carte options here.
A neighborhood spot in Park Slope, Wasan is the kind of place that you might have a very strong attachment to if you live within a 10-block radius. And the good news is, it’s currently open for both pick-up and delivery for lunch and dinner, with beer and sake options as well. You can grab a sushi set for $23 and also get a salad if you forget what that tastes like.
The Greenwich Village location of Domdomo is open for takeout, delivery, and outdoor seating between Tuesday to Sunday from 5pm to 10pm. They have a bunch of different sets that range from a $23 meal that includes four handrolls to a $65 “Sushi Domokase” that comes with 12 pieces of nigiri, two handrolls, sashimi, and miso soup. You can make a reservation ahead of time online here.