236 East 9th Street off St. Mark’s Place and Second Avenue
$5 for one, cash only
More like a shack than a restaurant, Otafuku has been a mainstay of this small block of Japanese stores. They have Japanese pancakes, okonomiyaki, but going to Otafuku means ordering the 6-piece takoyaki, octopus meat rolled into balls and mixed with ginger and scallions and topped with bonito flakes. They’re delicious as appetizers while you wait for a table at Sobaya but they’re also a good alternative to sreet hot dogs when you’re out drinking.