The diversity of New York City comes together in midtown Manhattan like a patchwork quilt. From the gritty, up-and-coming neighborhoods in Hell’s Kitchen to the bright lights of Times Square, every subsequent avenue maintains its own unique vibe. As you venture east, the din from the tourists fades as you encounter the briefcases of corporate America. Wait around here for the business day to end, and watch as a hush falls on the thinning streets. Now is the best time to have a delectable dinner at Aquamarine. With a young, modern vibe and intensely creative décor, Aquamarine is a relief from her over-crowded, cover-charging peers. ID is required at the door, but there’s no red velvet rope in site. The lighting is stylishly dim, with just enough of a glow to illuminate the Zen surroundings.
The design is spa-like, with a few choice walls blanketed by small, smooth stones. The main wall in the back of restaurant has the same pebbled countenance but is accented with a waterfall that flows across the wall itself, from the ceiling to the floor. This wall also provides a tactful barrier between the restrooms and the restaurant. The bar stands against one side, with a few high tables surrounding it. The more conventional dinner tables are on the opposing side of the one-roomed flat, marked with wicker chairs and rock beds at patrons’ feet.
But Aquamarine is not just another pretty face on the restaurant scene. The delectable, yet modestly-priced food stands up to the tough NY competition, creating an unforgettable dining experience. Take the shrimp pineapple fried rice, which the establishment has chosen to served in half a pineapple instead of a plate. The sushi also boasts of experimentation, with such innovations as a sweet potato sushi rolls. These are only a couple examples of their unique culinary combinations and presentations, enough to whet one’s appetite without spoiling all surprises to come.
This refreshing restaurant is an example of the true flavor of dining in New York. Without pretense or tourist dazzle, Aquamarine is an escape to quality service and food, reminding us that you don’t have to compromise for a great dinner at affordable prices.
Aquamarine Sushi Bar
713 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10016
Betw. 38th and 39th
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© Melt Magazine 2007