NYC is no stranger to unique speakeasies–from one disguised as a locksmith and shoe repair shop to one hidden away at the 28th St. subway station, bar owners and restauranteurs all across the city do a damn good job of thinking outside of the box.
And, as of today, Tuesday, January 24, we’re adding another one onto the list!
The Office of Mr. Moto is a brand new intimate speakeasy-style restaurant that offers the most mouthwatering omakase menu–that’s if you can get inside!
Those who are able to score a seat at the new East Village spot will receive a letter from Mr. Moto himself, which must be carefully read in order to solve a cipher that hints at how to enter the hidden restaurant. A Victorian-era mailbox with a pin pad inside is stationed at the unassuming storefront, where visitors will have to enter the passcode from the cipher they decoded.
How to know you’ve cracked the code–the opaque front door window will become translucent, allowing guests to enter the space.
And oh, how you’ll be rewarded once you make it through the entrance!
The entire experience is based on the fictional master of ceremonies, Mr. Moto–a gourmand and art connoisseur who traveled aboard the USS Susquehanna alongside Commodore Perry.
Upon entering, guests will embark on a journey through the history of 19th century Japan through a collection of rare Japanese antiques, including the first-ever English language newspaper to run in Japan and one of the first Japanese payphones, because Mr. Moto is more than just a restaurant and speakeasy–it’s also a private museum!
And 19th century Japan is showcased through more than just the art.
An Edomae-style omakase experience featuring fresh ingredients sourced directly from the Toyosu Fish Market in Japan is offered in both a 21 and 23-course menu. Regardless of which menu you choose, you’ll be delighted by delicious and thoughtfully-designed courses, each which represent a different period of Japanese history.
Highlights of the 21-course menu include Zuke-Maguro (Marinated Bluefin Tuna), Ni-Anago (Simmered Sea Eel), Kohada (Gizzard Shad), and Madai-Kobujime (Kelp-cured Japanese Sea Bream), while the 23-course menu highlights an uni tasting flight and welcome drink.
The option to pair seasonally selected craft sake to match each course is also available (and, of course, encouraged!)
Following your meal, guests are invited to unwind and imbibe in The Library, where you’ll get the chance to listen to Mr. Moto’s jazz collection and explore even more historical artifacts such as a Prohibition-era prescription for Japanese whisky.
On your way out you’ll receive a notecard with, you guessed it, yet another cipher. Once you crack this code you’ll be treated to a number of different perks.
It’s time to put your code-cracking skills to the test! Good luck!
📍120 Saint Marks Place
🗓️ Wednesday-Sunday, 6p.m. and 8:30p.m. seatings (14 people per session)