July 2024 | Itamae AO

July 2024 | Itamae AO

Itamae Returns with a New Identity: Welcome to Itamae AO

The renowned Nikkei restaurant, Itamae, has made a grand comeback with a fresh location, name, and menu. Now rebranded as Itamae AO, the establishment has settled into a cozy space in Midtown, where it offers an unconventional omakase experience at an intimate 10-seat counter.

A New Chapter with Chef Nando Chang

Chef Nando Chang spearheads this new venture, marking his first solo project. The addition of “AO” to the restaurant's name, which means “blue” in Japanese, is a homage to the ocean and a tribute to his family's journey from China to Peru.

“Itamae AO is the latest evolution of my culinary journey, deeply rooted in my Peruvian-Japanese heritage,” said Chang. “The journey Itamae has been on since it first opened in a food hall has been nothing less than amazing.”

Culinary Experience at Itamae AO

The eight-course menu at Itamae AO is a delightful exploration of flavors, featuring a rotating selection of dry-aged fish, sashimi, nigiri, and more. Signature dishes include local grouper sashimi with aji limo leche de tigre, showcasing the fusion of Japanese and Peruvian cuisines.

Highlights of the menu:

  • Dry-Aged Fish
  • Sashimi
  • Nigiri
  • Intermezzo
  • Noodles
  • Anticuchos
  • Aguadito
  • Dessert

Popular items such as the ceviche, a staple since Itamae’s inception, make a return. The dish features grouper dry-aged and cut into sashimi slices, paired with a classic aji limo leche de tigre and percebes (gooseneck barnacles). Other standout dishes include Muchame with swordfish, tomato, and heirloom beans, and Spot Prawn with soba noodles and shrimp head condiment, emphasizing the Japanese practice of utilizing the entire product.

Beverage Program

Itamae AO’s beverage program is equally impressive, offering a curated selection of sake, shochu, Japanese whisky, and a diverse list of wines selected by the staff to complement the seafood dishes.

A Design that Feels Like Home

The restaurant’s design evokes the feeling of arriving at Chef Chang’s personal open kitchen, enhancing the interactive dining experience. The space transformation from a juice bar to an omakase counter features natural wood textures and rattan sliding panels, which reveal four dry agers before each service. A blue terrazzo countertop adds a vibrant touch, aligning with the restaurant's oceanic theme.

Visit Itamae AO

For those seeking a unique dining experience that blends Japanese precision with Peruvian flavors, Itamae AO is a must-visit destination. With its intimate setting and carefully curated menu, it promises an unforgettable culinary journey.

Make your reservations today and join Chef Nando Chang in this exciting new chapter of Itamae AO, where tradition meets innovation in every bite.

July 2024 | Itamae AO
July 2024 | Itamae AO

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