Before filling up a plate at Hokkaido Seafood Buffet, take a moment to meander past the seemingly boundless rows of fresh crawfish, jumbo crab legs, and oysters, or to marvel at chefs as they toss steak and chicken on fiery teppanyaki grills. Stroll past the sushi station to admire sushi masters as they nimbly slice fresh fish and crispy vegetables into colorful specialty rolls, then saunter by simmering trays of pan-Asian specialties such as fried rice and crunchy spring rolls. The vast buffet abounds with more than 150 hot and cold items, many of which were made with seafood purchased directly from local fisherman.
Out in the spacious dining room, diners linger over last bites of creamy cheesecake and juicy strawberries in cushy booths, sipping imported beers and colorful cocktails. The bright space is decorated with nautical decor, including orange life preservers and impressionist pieces painted by local sea monkeys.
Gonpachi fashions its menu of authentic Japanese fare and Edomae (Tokyo-style) sushi from locally sourced ingredients, as well as authentic foodstuffs purchased from Tokyo's Tsukiji Market. Gonpachi hand-pounds its soba noodles daily from buckwheat flour threshed and milled on the premises. These freshly noodled noodles can then be served chilled with a dipping sauce as seiro ($8) or in a hot broth as kake soba ($8–$9). Gonpachi in Beverly Hills also practices the slow-cooking robata-style, preparing delicacies such as Chilean sea bass ($6) and bacon-wrapped cherry tomatoes ($3) over the gentle firelight of a traditional oak-charcoal pyramid. On the other end of the cooked spectrum, sushi fans can trap spicy tuna rolls ($5) between the bamboo chopsticks in their hands or the insect pincers on their faces. Chopsticks also protect hands from the flavor explosion of the dynamite roll ($16).
After spending more than 20 years in the fine-dining industry, the duo behind Roll It Sushi & Teriyaki saw a need in the market for tasty sushi that is both affordable and fresh. Today, their eatery features 17 classic and specialty rolls along with a fun build-your-own sushi roll station. There, clients can choose from two wraps, nine veggies, and either eight cooked meats or four types of raw fish. In addition to sushi, the restaurant offers teriyaki-style bowls, plates, and sandwiches.
From the bustling streets of Times Square to the equally vivacious streets of Hong Kong, people walk around with smiles after enjoying the japanese barbecue cuisine at Gyu-Kaku. The restaurant has more than 700 locations worldwide, each rooted in the belief that some of the strongest bonds between friends are forged at the dinner table. Groups dine on a huge variety of Japanese dishes, from popular meat and veggie dishes such as Harami Skirt Steak, Kalbi Short Rib, and Bacon-wrapped Asparagus - to unique Japanese-American appetizers such as the Spicy Tuna Volcano, Wasabi Crunchy Shrimp, and Ahi Tuna Poke. The real excitement takes place around individual grills, however, where diners can barbecue their own slabs of filet mignon, ahi tuna, or chicken with chili mayo until they are ideally tender or encircled by on-duty firemen.
A Buddha statue sits serenely against one wall inside Lotus, a spot that's part art venue, part restaurant, and part indoor hookah garden. Stalks of bamboo support the bar and the tables where diners grasp sushi with chopsticks or submerge thinly sliced steak, seasonal vegetables, and other morsels into Japanese Shabu-Shabu filled with boiling kelp water.
Fruity smoke drifts through the open space of the hookah garden, melding with fragrant steam from cups of hot tea. Egyptian rugs and massive cushions create an opulent, relaxing vibe for puffing away or sipping a cocktail.
Ittou Bento anchors a menu of Japanese-fusion cuisine around a selection of Eastern- and Western-inspired sushi rolls that changes every season. Meander into mealtime with a bowl of edamame pods, squeezing out savory bites before sporting husks as a fake mustache to hide from colorblind U.S. marshals. A catalog of hand and regular rolls share names with forces of nature, such as the Mudslide roll, a core of spicy tuna and cucumber bound in rice and covered with red snapper and wasabi-ponzu sauce, or baked crab and chipotle sauce clutched inside the Monsoon hand roll. The Twister roll seals a combination of crab and avocado beneath a seal of fiery tuna slices autographed in spicy mayo by Bill Paxton. (Soy paper can be spun around any chosen roll for an additional $1.) Coat toasty throats with a cool green-tea-mochi-ice-cream lacquer or tuck in taste buds with a slice of the new york–style cheesecake. Groups of four to six can clash chopsticks over a sushi boat of sashimi and rice-borne nigiri specials crafted from hamachi, albacore, yellow-fin tuna, ebi, salmon, and other fresh catches.