I’m not good at keeping secrets. It’s too much work. For instance - please don’t invite me to a surprise birthday party three months before it’s scheduled to happen, thereby enslaving me to weeks upon weeks of watching what I say around someone who is way too old to be celebrating insignificant birthdays anyway. Congrats on turning 32, here’s a cupcake. Additionally, you probably don’t want to give me any sensitive information about those people in your office who are sleeping together, the fact that your roommate got an STD, or the cheat codes to BioShock Infinite. As a matter of fact, I don’t even want the code to the hallway bathroom at the doctor’s office. I just can’t be trusted not to share that information, either accidentally or because I don’t care.
Which brings me to Bohemian. This “secret” restaurant behind the Japan Premium Beef butcher on Bond Street doesn’t have a published phone number. You’re supposed to obtain it from a friend who has already dined in the restaurant, just as they do at the original location in Japan. It’s basically a marketing gimmick, and it’s one that always seems to work in New York. People love to feel like they have the hook up. So after hearing chatter about this place since it opened up back in 2009, we finally played the game, tracked down the number, and made it in for dinner. And as you might imagine, we felt the need to talk about it. Bohemian is amazing.
What impressed us the most about Bohemian is that it’s not impressive because it’s exclusive. Usually, these “hidden” or “private” restaurants are a huge let down, like when you actually get inside the Soho House and see that it’s nothing but a bunch of trust fund dudes and the least famous Jonas Brother hanging out together. Much to our surprise, the food is absolutely excellent here, and the environment delivers, too. And the key to it all is simplicity. The room is small and vibey and very relaxed, with couches and lounge chairs and low profile tables. It’s about as perfect as a Date Night restaurant can get, because it’s comfortable. As for the food, you might think a secretive place like this would serve some crazy sh*t like blowfish sashimi or live scorpion tacos. But instead, the best things to eat are a whole branzino with brussels sprouts and olives and Wagyu beef steaks from the butcher out front. There’s even a reasonably priced tasting menu at $55, and they were playing old school Phoenix for two hours straight during our dinner. Not bad.
So now that you know about Bohemian, all you have to do is figure out how to get the phone number. Good thing you’ve got a friend that’s bad at keeping secrets.
A simple and delicious vegetable fondue, even though it’s pretty much just an upscale crudité. Start your meal off with one of these.
We liked this salad a lot, especially because we were drinking a good bottle of red wine and getting amped up for the steak. That said, there’s a lot of good things to eat on this menu, and a salad may not be worth it for you.
Yes, you really do want to eat some raw beef while you’re here. These pieces of incredibly tender marinated Washu short rib are nice and bite-sized so that you’re not dealing with more than you can chew. A must order.
One of the best miso black cod dishes that we’ve ever come across. The fish is perfect, and on the side is a little dish of uni gratin, which is incredible.
You need this on your table. This branzino is one of the best plates in the house at Bohemian, and we love it for its simplicity. It’s just a really well cooked fish sitting in a cast iron pan with potatoes.
Remember, Bohemian is situated behind one of the best butcher shops in all of New York. So guess where they get their steak? The waitress will hand you a little board in the shape of the cow that lists the available cuts for the evening. Go big. You won’t regret it.