During his travels abroad Michael Pearson fell in love with the popular street food okonomiyaki, a savory, pizza-like Japanese pancake. Eager to bring the delicacy stateside, Michael opened Yoko Ono Miyaki!, where he adds a Texas-style twist to okonomiyaki by topping his pancakes with ingredients such as pork belly, sesame-garlic tempeh, boudin, and oven-roasted brisket. Behind his walk-up window, Michael also whips up other Japanese treats to accompany his okonomiyaki, including miso soup, edamame, and banana milk from freshly milked bananas.
Across the street from the Paramount Theatre, Silhouette fills with moviegoers and sushi lovers, alike. As diners enter, they pass wall-size abstract paintings done in pastel greens, blues, and pinks. The sushi-centric menu displays more than 15 specialty rolls, such as the baked Lilac roll with white tuna and asparagus, and 30-plus sashimi and nigiri choices, such as snow crab, quail egg, and surf clam. To complement this collection of raw and cooked cuisine, libations such as Gekkeikan House sake, Kirin Ichiban beer, and avocado boba teas await pairings.
CRAVE's eight locations have gained a plethora of press and even an Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator. Each sleek eatery also entices diners with a diverse menu of modern American lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch fare devised by Corporate Executive Chef Bill King and a sushi menu of traditional and creative rolls. Each menu is then artfully executed using fresh and locally sourced, seasonal ingredients, as well as seafood flown in daily and handcrafted sauces made from authentic Asian recipes. Deck ovens give flatbreads and pizzas a crisp exterior while the grill keeps steaks, chicken, and burgers juicy.
Beaming with an energetic atmosphere and pulsating doorframes, Kenichi, awarded Best of Citysearch 2010, offers a modern dining experience where eating enthusiasts can comfortably gobble classic sushi and contemporary Asian cuisine. Keep taste buds on the tip of your tongue with a menu filled with tantalizing treats such as the smoked salmon roll ($8), the Kobe beef roll ($13), or the Austin-style sashimi, made with yellowtail, cilantro, serrano pepper, and basil vinaigrette ($16). Though this Groupon cannot be used toward alcohol, consider providing the sushi with a tour guide of sake to ensure a safe journey to the stomach.
The executive chef at Imperia emblazons an Asian menu full of fresh seafood and ingredients with a personal flair that has amassed seven Austin Chronicle reader accolades. Inside the stylish urban restaurant, pendant lights illuminate a marble bar winding past Asian decor, and cool slabs of bluefin sashimi stretch out on platters in the arms of attentive servers. Candles flicker across tables, as guests enjoy three-course omakase meals creatively orchestrated and handcrafted by the chef and catapulted directly into awaiting mouths.
Tucked into an unobtrusive strip mall near the University of Texas campus, the character-filled Coco's Café immediately sets itself apart with a colorful, sunny sign and bright purple and yellow interior. In front of the glass-block counter and hanging lights, Coco's Cafe's pictographic menu displays the wide variety of Taiwanese drinks and snacks on offer. The cafe's main claim to fame is their bubble tea, an Asian specialty beverage that involves chewy balls of tapioca served directly inside the drink. There are smoothies, fresh juices and coffees available as well, as well as hearty bowls of curry fried chicken with rice and steamed vegetable dumplings. The campus-adjacent location makes it an easy choice for students eager to grab a quick Taiwanese drink with friends.