Sake Cafe’s chefs mix and match myriad ingredients into nearly 20 specialty rolls. Their culinary centerpieces range from the Red Dragon’s shrimp tempura and seared tuna to the Spicy Kita-Kita’s five different fish slices wrapped around jumbo scallops and scallions. Grilled eel and fresh mango unite on the mango-and-eel roll, and the house roll is a cylinder of chopped Hawaiian ahi tuna, wild salmon, and yellowtail splashed with tobiko caviar all over the outside so it arrives smelling like seafood.
Kobe Japanese Steakhouse's team of chefs crafts a menu bursting with delectable Japanese fare. In the teppanyaki dining room, chefs grill teppan dinners to perfection before diners' eyes on griddles set into each table that facilitate premeal entertainment as well as light after-dinner firewalking. Choose from entrees such as the yakisoba dinner, in which beef, chicken, or shrimp are tossed playfully with vegetables and japanese noodles ($13.50), or opt to have juicy white meat chicken breast grilled to a golden brown with the teriyaki chicken ($12.50). Showy chefs entertain throughout the inclusive, multicourse meal with culinary acrobatics, such as erupting onion volcanoes, skillfully twirling spatulas, or diving out of the window after dinner and landing in the driver's seat of a stolen Ferrari.
HDYR's make-your-own-maki menu succeeds where make-your-own-pharmaceuticals failed by giving you options for putting your own spin on seaweed-wrapped rice wheels of fish (or vegetable, chicken, or beef) goodness. Start by selecting either a traditional (seaweed, $3.95) or modern (soy, $4.95) casing, then match it with a meat (11 options; $1.95 for beef, $2.50 for unagi, $2.95 for regular or spicy tuna). Next, add vegetables (12 options; pick up to three, additional are 50 cents each) and specialty toppings (seven options, including crunchy tempura, sesame seeds, and chili powder). You can also order sidekicks, such as seaweed, cucumber, or calamari salads ($1.50–$2.50), edamame ($0.99), miso soup ($0.99), or pre-concocted rolls such as the California ($5.95), Philadelphia ($6.95), or unagi ($6.95).
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.
Though its name suggests otherwise, the Forget About It roll’s unorthodox ingredients make it pretty memorable: the flavorful crunch of shrimp tempura is wrapped up with crawfish and accented by ginger cream. It's just one of the many unique combinations dreamed up by Piranha Killer Sushi's owner and chef, Kenzo Tran. Non-traditional sushi fixings are Kenzo’s specialty, from the White Lotus roll’s pico de gallo and truffle oil sauce to the Bullet roll’s cilantro chili purée and edible police officer’s badge.
That blend of the classic and unconventional runs throughout Piranha Killer Sushi's menu. Besides distinctive rolls, the kitchen serves up dishes such as Korean beef in ginger marinade, salads with octopus and spicy conch, and blue crab fried rice. Ditto the drink menu, featuring specialty libations such as the saketini, a blend of vodka, gin, and sake with a cucumber garnish. The restaurant's whimsical take on Japanese fare hasn't gone unnoticed—media outlets laud it for its tasty creations and inviting decor.
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.