NYC
Posted May 27, 2022

I read about Oiji Mi somewhere, and my gourmand syndrome was kicking in since I felt like I haven’t been to a prix fixe upper end restaurant in a while. Oiji Mi is relatively new, and it comes from the owners of the original East Village’s Oiji. It offers creative contemporary Korean dining composed uniquely for NYC. I saw that they offer a 5 course tasting menu for $125 per person, and the menu looked quite interesting.

Ambiance

The interior space is quite roomy and large with very high ceiling. Even though the restaurant was pretty full by the time we left, it was very easy to have a conversation with my partner. The decor felt very new age modern with wooden accents and squishy booth seats.

A very cool part about this restaurant is they pride themselves on having a decent list of non-alcoholic cocktails.

The service itself was at a very good pace, and the waiters made sure to keep our waters full the entire time. We never felt rushed even when my partner eats nearly three times as slow as me.

Food

The Hibiscus Soda ($10 - left) came with pathfinder hemp & root, hibiscus, tamarind, and lime. This was very refreshing as expected, and had a great aftertaste along with the bubbles.

The Jatchata ($15 - right) came with pine nut, cinnamon, and vanilla. It tasted like a light but very refreshing take on a Mexican horchata. This is a little expensive for the serving size, but it did taste very good.

The first course came together left to right for each of us:

  1. The Oysters came with cucumber kimchi, green apple pearls, and yuja. These are kumamoto oysters, and of course they were delicious.
  2. The Beef Tartare Croustade came with filet mignon, ramp, shiitake, and mustard seeds. The filet mignon tartare was fantastic. It had excellent texture and taste, and the lasting mushroom taste did not bother me enough.
  3. The Foie Gras came with pine nut, bokbunja, and brioche. This was quite interesting in that they took bokbunja wine, which is Korean black raspberry fruit wine, and encased it around the foie gras. The case had a very nice berry fruit jam texture and complemented the foie gras perfectly.

In the far right of the picture, that’s a cleaning napkin that expands after they add warm tea to it. They ask that you eat the three items above with your fingers, then you can clean them off with this napkin.

The second course came with Bo Ssam (for two) which included berkshire pork belly, oysters on the half shell, and spicy mustard mignonette. I’m a sucker for bo ssam in general, so it was inevitable I would order this. You take the napa cabbage, place all the sauces on leaf, add in the pork belly, and top it with an oyster. All the flavors were very bold and in complex harmony. The oysters gave it this interesting sea flavor and fatty texture, and the sauces cut right thru all of that with the added flavors. The sauces they gave us included ssamjang, pickled daikon, pickled kimchi, and pickled scallions. It will remind you a bit of the banchan in Korean restaurants. I definitely don’t think any of the sauces were spicy.

The Cashew “Kong-Guksu” came with trout roe, capellini, and pickled tomato. My partner ordered this, and it was a new experience for them. This is similar to the Korean cold noodles in the cold red chili soup (bibim naengmyeon) at restaurants. Instead of it being spicy, it came with this white pine nutty flavor which was quite delicious.

The Oiji Bowl (+$25 supplement) came with sea urchin, sweet shrimp, oiji (korean pickled cucumbers), and seaweed rice. This was sublime. Was it worth the extra $25? Probably not, but it was very good. Who wouldn’t love a plethora of uni with sweet shrimp on top of seaweed rice? The rice was very well mixed with seaweed, which is one of my favorite things on this planet. It reminded me of my wonderful nori tasting menu experience at The Smyth. If you are feeling rich tonight, definitely get this.

The Kimino, Ringo, Japan ($14) was sparkling juice of ringo apples from aomori prefecture. This was my mid-dinner non-alcoholic drink, and it was pretty good. It tasted like light, not too sweet, apple cider. I do not think it was worth the $14, but price aside (it’s on Amazon for $8), it was really good.

The Copenhagen Sparkling Tea Company, Bla, Denmark ($18) came with sparkling tea of jasmine, white tea, and darjeeling. This was really good and quite interesting. It was served cold with bubbles, and had very distinct aftertastes to it. I don’t feel it was worth $18, but if you are looking for something interesting, this definitely fits.

The Black Bass came with scallops, manila clam, and truffle seafood broth and was my third course selection. The black bass was perfectly crispy and tender. The broth itself was not overly salty and had mild truffle flavors. It had these little fried rice nuggets that soak up the broth and tasted sublime.

The Dry Aged Duck came with ssamjang kale, beech mushrooms, and date red wine jus. My partner liked this a lot, especially the mushrooms. The date red wine jus had some flavors of mushroom in it as well. The duck itself was cooked wonderfully and tasted very good.

The “Chapssal” Donuts came with gruyère, raclette, sweet rice, and crème fraîche ice cream. The donuts reminded me of a puffy soft dough-consistency donut. In the middle, there was gooey white cheeses in it. It tasted phenomenally complementary with the creme fraîche ice cream.

The “Ooyoo” Binsu came with a2 origin milk, strawberry, and injeolmi. This was similar to Hawaiian shaved ice. The milk gave it a very subtle sweetness to it, and the strawberry compote was a very nice complement to it. This dessert definitely was very refreshing and the perfect amount of sweetness for me. My partner found that it lacked sugar for them, but they do tend to favor more quantities of seasoning than me.

Final Verdict

Oiji Mi has a phenomenal Korean mid-range priced tasting menu. You can easily break the bank here if you’re not careful though when adding supplement courses or ordering drinks. The non-alcoholic drinks, despite tasting great, were nearly the same price as alcoholic drinks. Regardless of some of these prices, the meal itself was superb and offered excellent flavors for way less than the price points of Jungsik or Atomix. Definitely give this a try if you’re around the Flatiron area.

Yelp Jabs

The food is incredible and the space is gorgeous. Go with somebody else and try all of the different choices for a meal well worth the $125.

One caveat here is that in the middle 2 courses, there are supplement prices you would have to pay. You really need 3 people to try all the courses, and it will cost you more than $125 easy. They do allow you to order some of the courses individually for an added amount if you’d like.

Revisions

  1. May 27, 2022 - Added initial revision.