Boston Restaurants

o ya

  • 9 East St. Map It
  • Downtown
  • Japanese
  • Fodor's Choice

Published 07/13/2016

Fodor's Review

Despite its side-street location and hidden door, o ya isn't exactly a secret: dining critics from the New York Times, Bon Appetit, and Food &Wine have all named this tiny, improvisational sushi spot among the best in the country. Chef Tim Cushman's nigiri menu features squid-ink bubbles, homemade potato chips—even foie gras. Other dishes offer a nod to New England, such as the braised pork with Boston baked beans and "legs and eggs," lobster legs and caviar. For a hauntingly spectacular evening, indulge in the omakase tasting menu featuring either 17 courses ($185, or $265 with wine) or 20-plus courses ($285 or $465 with wine). Yes, that's a lot to drop on one dinner, but compared to the cost of flying to Japan, it's a bargain. Cushman's wife Nancy oversees an extensive sake list that includes sparkling and aged varieties.

Restaurant Information

Address:

9 East St., Boston, Massachusetts, 02111, USA

Map It

Phone:

617-654–9900

Restaurant Details:

  • Closed Sun. and Mon. No lunch

Published 07/13/2016

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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating
  • Décor

  • Service

  • Value

  • Food

Apr 29, 2017

Oh Yeah!

My spouse and I dined at O Ya for dinner on a Saturday evening in mid-January 2017. O Ya is open for dinner only on Tuesdays through Saturdays (closed on Sundays and Mondays). You can reserve a table online using the Open Table reservation system, where you will be asked to supply credit card details (24-hour cancellation policy). If you wish to dine at the sushi counter, telephone the restaurant directly in order to note your request. O Ya opened

in June 2015 on the street level of the Murray Hill’s Park South Hotel. (O Ya has its own separate entrance which require a few steps down from the sidewalk, or you can access the restaurant from the hotel lobby, which is more handicap-friendly and also offers access to the restrooms.) You can sit in one of three areas: in the tiny front dining space (with four pale wood booths), at tables positioned against the brick wall that share a long padded red-tapestry banquette, or at the 16-seat sushi bar. We requested seats at the sushi counter so that we could interact with the talented chefs. (Additional staff prepare hot dishes in a semi-open kitchen at the rear of the space.) Contemporary rock music set the tone for a fun meal in a relaxed atmosphere. O Ya is owned by Nancy and Tim Cushman, whose flagship outlet of O Ya is located in Boston. The restaurant offers modern Japanese cuisine (both cooked and raw) as a la carte dishes and as part of omakase tasting menus (18 courses for $185 and 24 courses for $245). Don’t expect traditional (edomae) sushi, but delight in something eclectic and innovative. Our 24-course menu follows. We requested a printed menu as we progressed through our courses, and the restaurant was quick to comply, even though it is not their usual practice. 1. Kumamoto oyster (ponzu, watermelon pearls, cucumber mignonette) 2. Hamachi (banana pepper) 3. King salmon tataki (tomato confit, onion aioli, smoked salt) 4. Hokkaido Uni (Black River osetra caviar) 5. Warm eel (Thai basil, kabayaki [eel preparation], Kyoto sansho [pepper]) 6. Housemade fingerling potato chip (perigord truffle) 7. Saba (ginger, scallion, cured kelp) 8. Wild spot prawn (garlic butter, yuzu tobiko, preserved Meyer lemon) 9. Warm chive omelette (chicken egg, dashi sauce, wagyu schmaltz) 10. Fried Kumamoto oyster (yuzu kosho aioli, squid ink bubbles) 11. Bluefin otoro (fresh wasabi, green onion, nasturtium) 12. Foie gras spoon (miso, preserved meyer lemon) 13. Cherrystone clam (wagyu chili oil, fennel) 14. Shima aji and Hokkaido sea urchin (aji [spicy tomato/pepper sauce] Amarillo vinaigrette, nigella [black onion seed]) 15. Madai (white soy, lemon oil, myoga [ginger]) 16. Bali scallop (coco dressing, lobster oil) 17. Kanpachi (Vietnamese mignonette, fried shallots, Thai basil) 18. Tuna Tataki (smoky pickled onion, perigord truffle) 19. Sip (torigara [chicken soup], mitsuba [hornwort herb], and yuzu zest) 20. Lobster beurre (ponzu butter, bonito flake, perigord truffle) 21. Grilled shitake and hedgehog mushroom (rosemary garlic oil, sesame froth) 22. Seared Wagyu as Kagoshima petit strip loin (potato confit, sea salt) 23. Foie gras (balsamic chocolate Kabayaki, Claudio corallo raisin cocoa pulp, sip of aged sake) 24. Apple sorbet (ginger soda, tarragon) 25. Chai sponge cake (brown butter crumble, miso ice cream, Asian pear) We enjoyed a phenomenal 24-course omakase tasting menu dinner at O Ya. Worth every penny!

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