Izakaya Ida is a casual Japanese pub that opened about six months ago in Manhattan’s Upper West Side neighborhood. I went in without checking the menu and it turned out that the only dumplings they serve are Takoyaki. I tried a few other dishes and their Matcha Onsen Tofu (boiled tofu with tea and sesame sauce) was fantastic, it was probably the best tofu dish I have had since Cho Dang Gol changed management and their tofu lost a step.
Izayaki Ida’s Takoyaki are also excellent. They were perfectly cooked with a crispy fried outer layer and creamy batter on the inside with a tender piece of octopus. While their Takoyaki were expertly prepared and really tasty, a minor critique is that they were a bit under dressed. They had copious drizzles of Japanese mayo and flakes of seaweed, but too little Takoyaki sauce and no bonito flakes. I prefer my Takoyaki fully dressed with lots of Takoyaki sauce, mayo, seaweed and a thick layer of bonito flakes.
I will definitely be heading back to Izakaya Ida for more boiled tofu and Takoyaki. It is on 72nd street between Columbus and Amsterdam.