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156 E. 45th St., nr. Third Ave. (Midtown East)
New York, NY
(1) 212-922-9788 | www.riceball-omsb.com
CUISINEJapanese Rice Balls
HOURSMon.-Fri.: 8:00am-7:30pm; Sat.: 11:30am-5:00pm; Sun.: Closed
BEST FORLunch; dinner; quick bite
PRICE (APPETIZER; RICE BALL; SET MENU)USD 0.80-5; USD 1.50-3.25; USD 5-12
FAMOUS PLATESSalmon rice balls
DRINKS AND WINEJuices; lemonade; soda; teas; coffee
# OF SEATS5-10
PRIVATE ROOM AVAILABLE?No
METROGrand Central-42nd St. (4, 5, 6, 7, S)
This bite-sized café seems to be the perfect match for its business: serving (almost) bite-sized treats, traditional Japanese rice balls called omusubi. (The venue’s name is the abbreviation of its signature dish). The Japanese version of fast food, these rice balls–triangular clumps of rice wrapped in sheets of lettuce or soy–are stuffed or topped with fillings like salmon, pickled plum, or cod roe. Takeout is the norm; most patrons prefer to come for a mid-afternoon snack (seating is limited to only a few tiny tables).
An interesting mix of Midtown suits on lunch break, Japanese expats, young hip things, and tourists.
WHAT WE WOULD WEAR
Casual; go with a colorful top, comfy skirt, and sandals.
GO HERE WITH
A friend; yourself
WHY WE LIKE IT
These delicious and portable treats make for a great snack between meals, especially if you’ve been trekking around Midtown all day. They’re portable and easy to eat on the go (no utensils needed). We get the brown rice option when we’re trying to be healthy.
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
More seats. This place is small, and the seats are often all occupied.
GOOD TO KNOW
It’s cash only, so be sure to stop by an ATM before getting in line. Along with the snack-sized rice balls, Oms/b also offers appetizers and some hot items like udon noodle soup, shrimp spring rolls, and dumplings. Takeout is available, as is delivery (with a USD 25 minimum).
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