Chef Jim Wu strives to create food that's both delicious and healthy. As such, he never uses food coloring, lard, or MSG in any of his sushi, steak, and other Japanese cuisine creations. His menu also includes a large selection of vegetarian items, and he hosts cooking classes on Saturday mornings at no charge. But after eating his artful maki and other creations, some guests may never want to cook again.
Combining showmanship with culinary skill, Shogun Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Bar's teppanyaki chefs strive to entertain their audience while feeding them. Spatulas become a blur as the chefs shuffle servings of filet mignon, lobster, scallops, chicken, and shrimp across their grills, presenting platefuls of food to diners seated just feet away. Occasionally, they stop their dexterous displays and perform one of their other tricks, such as making a pillar of flame erupt toward the ceiling or making droplets of water disappear with a sizzle. At the sushi bar, chefs arrange platters with nigiri, sashimi, and more than 50 house rolls. Tempura-fried vegetables, edamame with garlic butter, and bottles of premium sake round out the menu's selection of traditional Japanese cuisine.
The flashy teppanyaki cooking takes place at the horseshoe-shaped tables surrounding the dining room's hibachi grills. Across the dining room, simple wooden tables are flanked by high-backed booths or banquettes. Cylindrical pendant lamps and sconces keep the space lit, illuminating colorful paintings along the cream-hued wall and leafy potted plants sitting nearby.
The chefs at Sushi House Orlando not only craft impressive maki rolls that have won the eatery claim to several “best of” accolades, but also teach curious diners how to make their own at home during classes for all skill levels. Classic rolls present fillings of raw spicy tuna, unagi, and yellowtail, and more elaborate and playful bundles include the baked Graduation roll, which is a california roll wrapped in salmon and then topped with crab and scallops. The Happy Sumo roll reflects the same level of complexity, with three sauces draping over a tempura-fried roll of crab, tuna, and salmon.
The dining room maintains a lounge-like feel with crimson walls and gauzy black curtains, plus huge wall-mounted koi sculptures that arch over bartenders as they pour wines and sakes.
At Fujiyama Sushi, sushi chefs painstakingly craft specialty rolls while skilled teppanyaki cooks dazzle patrons, flipping and chopping meals before their eyes. The selection of sushi rolls ranges from basic California and sweet-potato rolls to the chef's specialty Irish roll—a combination of spicy salmon, cream cheese, and asparagus topped with slices of kiwi. For a hot meal, diners can roast their sushi rolls over Bic lighters or opt for dinner around a teppanyaki grill, where preternaturally coordinated cooks fling shrimp onto plates or directly into waiting mouths.
At Mikado Japanese Cuisine, art is not hung, but served horizontally. Expertly sliced fish nestles against lettuce leaves inside a miniature wooden boat, and sprigs of blooming flowers garnish snugly wrapped maki rolls. Clearly, the chefs behind the sushi bar put presentation on the same high pedestal as culinary finesse. Their emphasis on eye-catching edibles has helped to propel the restaurant's growth, transforming it from a single tiny sushi shop into three expanded establishments.
At each one, diners can peruse a menu of 31 specialty rolls, including the Hot Mama—a compilation of smoked salmon, avocado, crab, bay scallops, tempura crunch, and cinnamon-honey sauce. Fresh fish also arrives as nigiri, sashimi, and sushi, creating oceanic complements to grilled hibachi steaks at the Lake Mary location. Tempura shrimp and fried vegetables accompany toasty bowls of udon and soba soups, and appetizers range from skewered barbecue chicken to baby octopus, which only differs from adult octopus in that it never learned to count its tentacles.
At Bikkuri Sushi, colorful inventive rolls filled with crab, salmon, avocado, and sweet potato share table space with traditional meals of udon soup, beef sukiyaki, chicken donburi, and vegetable tempura. Guests capture ramen noodles, scallops, and dumplings between the pincers of their chopsticks, or savor the complex tastes of ocean-fresh tuna, conch, and yellowtail nigiri. Diners pair bento box feasts of tofu curry and fried rice with sips of dry sake, imported Japanese beers, and potent cocktails. And at the attached Bikkuri Lounge, up to 130 party guests sing karaoke and dance amid the EV sound system, raised dance platform, and LED disco wall lights,.