New Restaurants: Sapphire Indian, Two Wheels Vietnamese, and Gyu-Kaku Japanese Barbeque


Satish Arora making the final preparations to open Sapphire.

Indian, Vietnamese and Japanese restaurant openings should get your mouth watering.

Indian restaurant Sapphire, which was forced to close its former location near 60th Street because the building was being demolished, is opening its new location at 2014 Broadway between 68th and 69th Streets on Wednesday night, owner Satish Arora told us.

A Vietnamese restaurant called Two Wheels just opened at 426 Amsterdam Avenue between 80th and 81st Streets. Two Wheels has a wide variety of Vietnamese cuisine, from bahn mi sandwiches to noodle dishes. There are also unique delicacies like parmesan truffle fries. We got a copy of the menu here.

Gyu-Kaku Japanese barbeque restaurant has soft-opened at 620 Amsterdam between 90th and 91st Streets. Gyu-Kaku is part of a chain and the menu is similar to the other locations. Here’s the a la carte menu. For now, they’re just open from 4 to 10 on Sunday-Thursday and 4 to 11 on Friday and Saturday. There’s lots of booth seating. That location was most recently a Key Food market and before that Saigon Grill.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 19 comments | permalink
    1. Patty F says:

      Sapphire!! Been counting the days!

    2. Leon says:

      I wish all of these businesses good luck. I have been to Gym-Kaku in midtown east and it is fun and good food. The owners of this location have clearly spent a lot renovating.

      The little storefronts on that stretch of Amsterdam are so tiny that they have had a lot of difficulty being successful. I’m assuming a big delivery business is the key to success. Good luck to the owners.

    3. Libby says:

      gyu kaku is awesome and i’m so happy to have it here

    4. TravelgalNYC says:

      Parmesan truffle fries at a Vietnamese restaurant? “A unique delicacy??” This is the problem with restaurants on the UWS, they try to appeal to everyone and don’t rely on the strength of their food. The only reason they would add paremesan truffle fries to their menu is if they know the rest of their menu is not good enough! Get it together people!

      • George says:

        Their pho is excellent. I swung by Two Wheels last week to try a bowl, and a few apps off the menu, and it’s all really great stuff — by far the best Vietnamese I’ve had uptown.

        There are literally only five apps and a handful of mains on the menu. It feels pretty focused. They also have options for all the entrees that are $10.95 or $11.95. And they’re literally the only Vietnamese option on the UWS between Pho Shop on 72nd and Mekong on 105th. I don’t know why we’d waste time being cynical about fries when we can celebrate an interesting and affordable new restaurant opening in the neighborhood.

      • Paul says:

        Truffle fries on a “Vietnamese” menu? That’s what happens when a country was a colony of France for 100 years.

    5. Mike says:

      Those prices seem too high for gyu-kayu. We are well off and do dinner 1-2x a week out and even that price point of $110 for two is pretty high and that’s before a drink or two plus tax and tip…. So what $175-250 for a family dinner counting kids food? That’s special occasion meals and Carmines already does that well right around the corner albeit a different cuisine of course

      • chris woo says:

        re gyu-kaku prices. we have dinner out several times a week and the tab for two usually comes to about $100 (2 entrees, shared app, shared dessert) with a drink and before tip. but comparing it to carmine’s seems unfair. you are talking pasta — retail cost what? $.50 a pound vs beef, chicken shrimp etc. Plus maybe extra for fire insurance if there is fire at the tables. I think you should think of the prices more inline with what you would pay for Korean bbq. Anyway, I am glad for more options and for not having to trek down to Korea town next time I want table-grilled kalbi.

        • MQue says:

          Agree, Korean BBQ is expensive due to ingredients and cost of meat and pan chan. Pasta is the cheapest food out there. I’m very excited that we have Gyu in the neighborhood.

      • Juan says:

        Not sure where you are getting those prices. If you just order a bunch of items a la carte and don’t need all premium items you can come in for well under that. The pre-packaged meals are for those who are either a) not price sensitive and/or b) too lazy to construct their own meal.

        Also, I am usually a fairly generous tipper but I think you can also save a bit on the tip seeing as you are the one doing the actual cooking (I know that they are doing the prep and bringing it to you, so they do deserve something).

      • George says:

        The $110 set is recommended for three people. Their menu has a $65 set and a $75 set for two people to share.

    6. Cage says:

      Thrilled that Sapphire is about to open.

    7. Robynn H. Delin says:

      Happy to have Sapphire in the neighborhood.

    8. ben says:

      yipee for gyu-kaku finally opening!

    9. Elly says:

      Excited for Gyu-Kaku! Would love more restaurants in the upper 90s.

    10. Liifeoong UWS says:

      I thought after Saigon Grill closed that location was a health food store for, like, 2 minutes.

      Anyway. Veeery excited it id finally opened. I’ve been stalking the place for months.

    11. Penny says:

      Yay! I’m so happy for Sapphire. The team was so worried about finding a new space near Lincoln Center when their former location sold. And everyone should know about their superb lunch buffet and takeaway specials.

      • John says:

        Sadly, when I asked at Sapphire yesterday I was told they will NOT be offering a lunch buffet at the new location. Only a la carte. That is really a shame – the old buffet was both excellent quality and great value.

    12. Big Nathan says:

      Can confirm Two Wheels is delicious!