A great Japanese sake bar in NYC, with a lot of character. It is located in the East Village near Astor Place. To get in, you have to walk down a flight of stairs to a basement entrance and hit a buzzer. As far as I can tell, anyone who hits the buzzer gets let in during its hours (10 pm ~ 4 am). Still, it makes me feel 1337 buzzing myself in. Inside is a montage of Japanese artwork and sake memorabilia, roped off waiting area, and, if you're lucky, a cute smiling waitress with orange hair. Otherwise, you get a gruff frowning waiter.

Once seated, you find yourself in a dimly lit room, 'intimately' packed together. Elbow room is sparse, so I wouldn't goto Decibel with a group larger then 4. What gives Decibel its name is the loud music they blast; I have heard everything from Kraftwerk, Snoop Dog, Face to Face, Frank Sintra, and Japanese Pop that a gaijin like myself wouldn't recognize.

Beyond the eclectic music being played, the real reason to go to Decibel is the sake. They stock over 30 different types and are kind enough to categorize them into mild, dry, and very dry for the unknowing. Served either warm or chilled, they should have something for any sake lover. For those of different palates, they have a selection of mixed drinks (I've been told the litchi martinis are rawkin) and a small list of food (the edamame is yumm-o).

So if dim, loud, and good are adjectives for your kinda places, give Decibel a poke.