J and I decided to come early since we figured that the later it gets the harder it'll be to get a table here. The weather in NYC was in the 90s and it was extremely uncomfortable to be walking around outside. Given the chance that it opens, we're going inside right away. Half an hour into dinner service and the place was already packed.
Sake Bar Hagi, known for their bottles of sakes also have some good Japanese bar food. We took our time to order and tried to relax and enjoy ourselves.
A yuzu cocktail to cool myself down. We ordered sake and shoju also but they literally looked like water in a glass, nothing too special. They were definitely strong in taste. One bottle and I'm sure I'll be done for the night.
Fried Chicken Gizzard.
Love me some gizzard and I can't say no to fried food! The chewy tough texture of the gizzard is so addicting. Think of it has chewing a tough part of a chicken but breaks apart a lot easier. A little lemon and it's perfect.
Assorted yakitori. From top to bottom - duck, liver, chicken skin. Right side, top to bottom - pork belly and pork intestines. The duck was really good which I was surprised because I don't usually see duck skewers at a Japanese restaurant. Liver was really liver-y and iron-y, good thing there was only 4 pieces. The chicken skin and intestines tasted crunchy and oily. Pork belly was your average pork meat, nothing too special.
Delicious grilled whole mackerel. Filled with meat but do look out for those tiny bones, they are so tricky to find!
Beef tongue has a very similar consistency to chicken gizzard. If you slice up chicken gizzards as thin as beef tongue, I'm sure they taste very much alike.
J ordered this. I would never had the guts to order anything sashimi because I personally don't like it as much. One thing though, the uni was really fresh and they give a generous portion for the price. The fresh grated wasabi actually goes great with the uni because it counters the fishy-ness of it.
Sauteed Chicken Gizzard and Garlic Sprouts.
To end the night I figured we could use something that was sauteed. Plus, I wanted some greens since everything we ordered before seemed so unhealthy. And we needed a bit of munchy food to go with our sake and shoju.
Definitely a good Japanese bar. Since it's located in midtown the vibe that you get is more matured and laid back. It's loud but not as crazy loud as Kenka or Oh! Taisho in the East Village.
Sake Bar Hagi
152 W 49th St
New York, NY 10019