Noirish lighting, narrow passageways lined by trompe l’oeil mirrors that turn a small bamboo garden into a forest, seemingly endless twists and turns—you’re right to wonder just where you’re headed when the host at Zenkichi leads you to your table. Fortunately, the quixotic journey, which begins at a concealed entrance, has a happy ending. The destination is a private booth—complete with tatami shades—that is your intimate dining alcove. When you’re ready to choose from the sake and small-plate izakaya (that’s Japanese pub grub) menus, simply press a button at the edge of the table. It summons the server, who promptly appears as if from out of the ether. The whole experience is confounding, in a good way, and in perhaps the most surprising twist, the transporting setting doesn’t outshine the equally enchanting food.
77 North 6th St
|Cross street:||at Wythe Ave|
|Opening hours:||Wed–Sat 6pm–midnight; Sun 5:30–11:30pm|
|Transport:||Subway: L to Bedford Ave|
|Price:||Average small plate: $9. MC, V|