A colleague of mine was in NYC from Germany visiting her cousin. We decided to meet up for lunch since we don’t really get to hang out except once a year at our company retreat. She requested a cuisine that is not commonly found in Germany – aka Asian food. I had never been to Yakitori Totto myself but the place perpetually has long lines so I figured it would be tasty and who doesn’t love barbecued meat on skewers?
We were seated right away thankfully.
We both decided to go with the Totto Don which has three types of chicken served over rice – the wing, the meatball and then the breast with grilled scallions. It’s offered with a side of more scallions and Japanese pickles.
This was not that good. I expected it to be more flavorful but aside from the chicken meatball (which was moist), the wing was flavorless and extremely chewy and the breast meat was dry. Honestly the best part was probably the Japanese pickles! It’s served with side of poached egg that you are supposed to dip your chicken in and then mix in with the rice but even the egg was cold. I was incredibly underwhelmed by this dish. This is what the lines are for?!
We also got a side of the short rib just to taste (not pictured here) and it was incredibly fatty (even for short rib) and grisly and served lukewarm. Not a fan of that either.
The bowl comes with miso soup and salad. The salad had a really nice dressing.
I’ve been to the location on the east side and liked it much better. I did not enjoy my lunch very much and what put me off was everything was served lukewarm or cold. Thankfully my German colleague didn’t know better and liked her meal. I, however, won’t be back.
Yakitori Totto, 251 West 55th Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY