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Note: Matsuri closed in March 2012. A branch of the club/restaurant Tao will replace it.


I dined with a couple of colleagues at Matsuri in early December. While William Grimes was convinced that the sushi was in the upper third, we considered it merely mid-range — which is to say, neither bad nor particularly distinguished.

We ordered a sushi/sashimi platter that was described as a selection for five people, although the three of us went ahead and ordered a bit more after consuming all of that. A shrimp tempura roll seemed the best item on the platter, with honorable mention to some extremely tender tuna belly.

The Times review described the restaurant’s location as Chelsea. Nowadays, one would describe it as “Meatpacking-adjacent,” with the main drag of that clubby neighborhood within spitting distance of Matsuri’s door. The restaurant is lovely inside, and we had a perfectly happy time, topping off the evening with Macallan 18’s (and one of our party with an excellent creme brulee dessert).

But we won’t rush back.

Matsuri (369 W. 16th Street at Ninth Avenue in the Maritime Hotel, Chelsea)

Food: *
Service: *
Ambiance: **
Overall: *

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