NoHo Nibbles: Asian Restaurants for Every Occasion

Jin Lee ’16
Contributing Writer

Sometimes we’re stuck not knowing what to eat in town for certain occasions, but we don’t have time for indecision! These are some of my favorite Asian restaurants to go to when I’m craving authentic Asian food. For those people who have never tried Asian food, these are some restaurants where you can expand your palate!

Banh Mi Saigon: For cheap and casual dinners
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Across from Fitzwilly’s and next to Local Burger, Banh Mi Saigon’s authentic taste and flavor will convince you to return. Originally a pho restaurant, two years ago Banh Mi Saigon added banh mi sandwiches and buns to its menu with its reopening. It is the cheapest Asian restaurant in downtown NoHo, and you can head there from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Tuesdays to Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sundays. Look for specials on their chalkboard, including $5 banh mi sandwiches!

Zen: For when your parents visit
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Head on over to Zen on those days when you have visitors or want to treat yourself to nice sushi.  Zen, located across from Banh Mi Saigon and next door to Lucky’s, offers a variety of dishes ranging from sushi and sashimi to rolls, salad and hot options, including classic Asian dishes and noodles. I highly recommend the tuna tataki salad, Mini Raw (for bigger portions, go for the Nothing but Raw) and volcano roll. Don’t forget about the lunch menu on weekdays from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., when prices are lower and meals come with a salad or soup appetizer.

Osaka: For date nights and birthdays
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A bustling restaurant across from Herrell’s and behind the psychic reading house, Osaka is a great place to get dinner with your friends. Its menu is more diverse than Zen’s and a bit less expensive. Some recommendations are the dynamite and volcano rolls, and for non-fish eaters, the tempura udon and katsu don. However, its biggest attraction is the hibachi. Going to Osaka on your birthday and sitting around the hibachi table with your friends is a popular tradition! Not only is hibachi delicious, but the show is also half the fun!

Siam Square: For Flavor-Filled Times
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Siam Square is one of the more authentic Thai restaurants you can find in downtown NoHo. Situated across from LimeRed, Siam Square offers a diverse array of tastes that will satisfy everyone’s palates. My personal favorites are the green curry, drunken noodles (a spiced-up version of pad Thai) and pineapple fried rice. If you haven’t tried Thai food, this is the place to check out. Be prepared to have your mind blown!

Gohyang: For Sing-Your-Heart-Out Nights
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Though farther from the other restaurants on this list, Gohyang, located on Route 9, is the closest Korean one to Smith. Recently there has been a change of ownership, but Gohyang remains true to its Korean roots and continues to serve homemade Korean dishes, like Kalbi (grilled marinated short ribs), kimchi jiggae (kimchi stew) and bibimbap. In addition, Gohyang also has two additions to the restaurant: a store filled with all instant and non-instant Korean food and karaoke rooms where you can sing your heart out after dinner. So if you’re craving Korean food, head on over!

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