AOI Kitchen

Last Summer, I watched an incredible episode of Buzzfeed’s Worth It, where our food heroes Steven and Andrew traveled all the way to Japan and tried a dish called Omurice. Ever since then, I’ve been dreaming about trying this delicious omelette stuffed with flavorful fried rice laying in a pool of a rich brown sauce. Did I keep an eye on roundtrip rates to Japan? Yes. Was I still making minimum wage? Yes. As you could tell, I never flew to Japan for a great foodie adventure, but months later something caught my eye. My favorite food account (more like food family), @foodbabyNY, posted a picture of the exact dish I have been craving from a new restaurant called AOI Kitchen. Obviously, I ran not walked over to the East Village to try it, and here’s what I thought.

First of all, the Omurice was served on a gorgeous wooden platter with many accompaniments. I’m talking miso soup, fish, pickled cucumber salad with sesame seeds, salad with peanut sauce, and orange jelly! It was so much fun just trying everything individually, and it really made a difference in the experience. Might I just say, they served LEMON WATER instead of regular water? AOI Kitchen won my heart with that power move.

Platter of Happiness

Let’s dive into the star of the platter, shall we? The Omurice itself was just incredible. The egg surrounding the rice was the kind of egg Ina Garten herself would make on Barefoot Contessa. You know, the really fancy kind of wet scrambled eggs? Inside this glorious omelet was some of the best fried rice I have ever had. A flavorful, salty, porky, rice with carrots mixed in. Simple, yet extremely satisfying paired with the surrounding egg. Now, here’s where things get interesting. The brown sauce. I thought it was going to be a rich gravy-like, curry-like topping, yet it mostly tasted like barbecue sauce. Traditionally, Omurice is topped with ketchup, so is it my fault for not doing the proper research? Maybe. Would I order it again with the sauce on the side? Yes. Did I still enjoy it? Yes. Your mileage may vary and you may love it, or you can just barely like it (if you’re like me). I didn’t think the tang was the greatest compliment to the other flavors, but I can agree that it needed a sauce texturally.

Omurice
Inside of the Omurice

The vibe of this place is hip, the people working here are friendly, and the food is yummy. The sauce wasn’t my favorite, but you’ll see me here again. Maybe I’ll even try something else? I’ll let you know.

8 thoughts on “AOI Kitchen

  1. Wow Sam, that dish looks amazing. Anything with eggs and rice, if its a combo or not gets my attention. Thank you for sharing this with us. It looks delicious and I appreciate your honesty on all the elements in the dish. Spoken like a true blogger. Love to read your blogs and find out what you like and don’t like. Keep up the great work. I appreciate everything you do!!!

    Dennie Terhune

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  2. It is awesome! I am concerned now that it will become too popular and will have long wait times. 😍

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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    1. I was able to walk right in, but let’s see how much longer that lasts! I heard of another Omurice place in the city, and I think I want to try it to compare. It’s going to be hard to beat this one!

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  3. Sam,
    My daughter lives in Astoria, and works on Park Avenue. She also like to venture out to enjoy “new finds”. I will definitely pass this onto Amanda. I enjoy your writing and look forward to the next one
    Thanks Sam-I love your parents

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