Moku Moku isn’t really a Japanese restaurant. It’s true that it was born out of the success of its sister restaurant to which it is conjoined (Momo Sushi Shack), and with its sake and skewer offerings, it’s true that you could call it an izakaya, but the menu takes some hard turns off the well-worn path of tradition and even out of the gray area of “Japanese fusion” and ends up someplace unique.
When was the last time you had an octopus tentacle turned corndog, fried to perfection and dressed in kewpie and bonito flakes ($8)? What about quality salmon, done like pastrami and paired with hummus made from edamame ($9)? Co-owner Phillip Gilmour makes sure to use the best ingredients, such as Label Rouge chicken, Heritage pork and wagyu beef—and the difference is in the taste, especially when it comes to the selection of skewered meats paired with some fantastic dipping powders and sauces ($2–$6).
You’ll also find beef hearts and tongues and chicken gizzards, and even the brussels sprouts feel new and exciting thanks to a healthy portion of shuto butter and a tiny bit of pickled fish entrails for a blast of umami ($6).
Like the Bushwick neighborhood near which it resides, the menu is a bit hectic. There’s a lot going on, but each dish is like a little adventure—flavor-packed, unique, over-the-top and at times ridiculous. But no choice is the wrong one, especially if you’re not afraid of trying something new.
BY: TIME OUT COMMUNITY REVIEWER SHAWN McCREESH