Sakura Café

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Park Slope
Everything at this traditional Japanese restaurant is light, delicate and gentle—the decor, the food, even the service. Owner Fumiko Akiyama has outfitted the place with a cherrywood bar, green bamboo floors and handmade pendant lights. And although Tokyo-trained chef Shinji Nishikawa doesn’t take many risks, he balances flavors every step of the way. A salad of cool crab and cucumber, for example, is a play of sweet and salty flavors, brought to life with a soy-spiked mayonnaise; grilled black cod gets a yuzu-soy glaze; and the sushi, flown in from Japan, features creative rolls like the Sakura, a tight wrap of smoked salmon, avocado and—surprise—mango. A three-glass sake sampler should get you through at least half the meal.
Venue name: Sakura Café
Address: 388 Fifth Ave

Cross street: between 6th and 7th Sts
Opening hours: Mon–Sat 5–11pm; Sun 5–10pm
Transport: Subway: F, G, M, R to Fourth Ave–9th St
Price: Average main course: $12. AmEx, MC, V
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