The second local branch of Gyu-Kaku, opening Friday, October 20, offers something a bit heftier than bar snacks. It specializes in yakiniku, or Japanese barbecue cooked at table grills over "smokeless" ceramic coals. As at its Cooper Square location, the raw materials range from Wagyu beef to tofu and may be basted with or dipped into an array of sauces. If all this reminds you of 32nd Street's Korean-barbecue joints, so will the presence of kimchee, bibimbap, and kalbi soup. For dessert, on October 27, barring construction delays, Kyotofu establishes an American outpost for its Asian-fusion desserts and specialty drinks. Tofu and soy milk make their unexpected but virtuous way into brownies, ice cream, and cheesecake, a development hard-core junk-food fiends might find hard to swallow.
Izakaya Ten, 207 Tenth Ave., nr. 23rd St.; 212-627-7777.
Gyu-Kaku, 805 Third Ave., at 53rd St., second fl. (212-702-8816); opens October 20.
Kyotofu, 705 Ninth Ave., nr. 48th St. (212-974-6012); opens October 27.
— Rob Patronite & Robin Raisfeld