Meiji's signature maki rolls are steeper in price but also well worth it considering the 15 years of sushi know-how that go into each of Chef Ishi's creations. And forget your typical mochi: I nearly waddled out the restaurant's baroque wooden door after sampling four of these treats, each one besting the one before it. (To try: the Green Tea Melle Feuille, pronounced my-fy, honey butter pastry squares with sesame seeds and a green tea pastry cream, served with raspberry coulis.)
Despite the fact that Meiji gets its name from a turbulent era in late nineteenth century Japan, the ambiance of the restaurant conveys serenity and elegance. There is a soft glow to the room (another upstairs space will soon be converted into a sake/dessert lounge) and an unusual amount of open space compared to other funky spots in the district.
From the crescent-shaped bar that seems to take up half of Meiji's floor you can comfortably observe smartly dressed diners at the twelve or so tables, cared for by a smartly dressed staff who wears the chic combination of a pale pink collared shirt with maroon neck tie. The result is an atmosphere that's great for couples or groups of friends ready to get a jump on a hot night out. My only "but" would be the standard, pulsing techno beats; the delicate preparation of the food seems deserving of something less jarring.
Average cost: $21-$30