A new Greenpoint restaurant inspired by the "butter of the sea" opens Wednesday evening on Manhattan Avenue after several months in "soft opening" mode through neighborhood word-of-mouth. Owners Ben Pasquale and Shirley Yeo tapped two Morimoto alums—Jeremy Arias and Iman Khondker—to collaborate on a vision of Japanese "hospitality" at Bar Uni, creating a relaxed, izakaya-like spot for cocktails and Japanese whiskey alongside lots of seafood and composed dishes to complement the drinks.
There are several uni (sea urchin) applications, including a "Shooter" ($7 each) with quail egg, salmon roe and sake, plus an Uni Toast ($9) sprinkled with pomegranate seeds. Toasts are another theme on the menu, including an Avocado version ($9) with jalapeno and red sorrel, plus a Wild Salmon Toast ($13) with horseradish and cream.
There's a splendid backyard to complement the multi-room interior and the large bar that seats 14. Tucked away from the traffic of Manhattan Ave there are metal tables and chairs ready for longterm sessions sipping Okinawa Old Fashioneds and a Yuzu Collins made with vodka, yuzu juice, lime and pineapple gum syrup.
674 Manhattan Avenue, Greenpoint, (646) 833-8564; bar-uni.com