From your first approach, Bohemian inspires that sense of unease, of not being in on the secret. There's no sign or indication of a restaurant on Great Jones Street in NoHo. The first time you walk down "Basquiat Road" (he died in his loft at this address) the plain hallway adjacent to Japan Premium Beef in search of one of its only six tables, you're likely to be rebuffed for not having a reservation. Trouble is, the phone number isn't online and the article you read calling it the "most mysterious restaurant in New York," says something about friends passing along "Bohemian's secret phone number" and having your references "checked." It's not that complicated. Go down the hallway, get rebuffed, ask for the number and you're given a card with it.
Once you have that reservation, you get access to the small, homey dining room, some à la carte options and a six-course tasting menu. Some rave about the Washugyu beef sliders, whose meat is the first pick of the good stuff being sold at Japan Premium Beef. They're pretty good, but the quality of the seafood and its expert presentation is more impressive. On a visit in August, raw ebi presented spritzed with a bit of lime were fresh, sweet, and tangy. And for these reasons this dish made my list of most memorable meals of 2011.
Click for more of the Most Memorable Meals of 2011.