If cooking were a language, the chefs at Makoto Japanese Restaurant would be multilingual. They follow Chinese, Japanese, Malaysian, and Thai cooking traditions to craft dishes ranging from Thai-style duck with curry sauce to broiled eel with seaweed salad and Japanese pickles. At any given time, they might be slicing fresh sashimi in the kitchen or dazzling hungry guests at tableside hibachi grills. They approach grilling as a performance, thrilling audiences by flipping juicy steaks, sizzling tender scallops, and chopping vegetables fast enough to ignite the flames that light the grill. Wooden walls border the hibachi tables, creating an air of exclusivity as diners delight in the semi-private show.
Owners Sophie Tan and Calvin Yum know how to make sushi fun. Which is why their restaurant, Cucumber Sushi and Salad Bar?called "a shiny new restaurant that epitomizes millennial dining" by the Staten Island Advance?entertains diners in a trendy eatery that features minimalistic decor and a menu of classic and creative Asian dishes. Traditional options such as yellowtail rolls and thai coconut curry support the menu's creative cast of Japanese salads and specialty rolls made from spicy kani and Mexican seasonings. Cucumber Sushi and Salad Bar also offers prix-fixe and spring special menus.
An extensive menu sets Midori Japanese Restaurant apart. A dozen-plus hibachi dinner selections counter 20+ midori special rolls, including selections of Alaska crab, batter-fried sweet shrimp, and yellow fin tuna—which in the wild, amid a school of tuna, looks like the school bus. Sushi and sashimi abound, too.
Arirang Hibachi Steakhouse and Sushi Bar's hibachi chefs pull double duty, acting as entertainers in addition to grillmasters. They captivate large groups of diners with whirling knifework, dynamic spatula twirls, and the occasional spout of flame at tableside hibachi grills, flipping hot portions of lobster and chicken directly onto waiting plates. Behind the bamboo-finished bar, the sushi chefs move more slowly as they carefully seal colorful combinations of veggies, seafood, and vinegar-anointed rice within sheets of delicate seaweed. Like a poltergeist beauty pageant, not all of the talent is visible to the eye—the culinary team makes some of the restaurant's most exotic dishes, such as kobe beef sliders and wasabi-crusted filet mignon, behind the closed doors of the kitchen.
At Daimatsu Japanese Sushi Bar, head chef Masatomo "Momo" Soma puts his decade of professional experience to good use as he creates visually stunning masterpieces of Japanese cuisine. Diners savor the subtle flavors of thinly sliced sashimi and sushi, then expand their palates to prized deep-sea dishes⎯such as giant clam, skipjack, and sea urchin⎯without having to peruse early-morning fish markets or become a stowaway on an ocean trawler.
Homestyle dishes of breaded-pork katsu cutlets, savory udon noodles in miso broth, and salmon teriyaki add a hearty touch to lunches and dinners. Salads and appetizers such as tender-chicken yakitori or plump-pork gyoza complement meals with morsels of expertly prepared veggies, seafood, and meat.
With more than 50 HDTVs, surround sound, stadium seating, and a trio of 100-inch screens for major sporting events, Central Park makes a strong case against actually going to the big game. Enveloped by accommodating extras, the restaurant's guests find an equally accommodating menu that's loaded with favorites for all sorts of tastes. At the center of Central Park's spread, the Southwest onion stack buries a burger beneath a tower of onion rings. It stands at more than a half-foot tall?about the height of an adolescent bobblehead?and headlines a selection of burgers, pizzas, and other game-friendly foods. Even with all this, Central Park packs one more surprise: a sushi bar, where fans can devour traditional rolls and special creations.