In the dramatically lit, contemporarily furnished dining room of Enso, chefs and servers decorate tabletops with dependable midwestern meals emanating worldly wisdom. The creative dinner menu reveals a strong steakhouse influence, with a signature New York strip steak giving romantic advice to fluffs of Yukon gold mashed potatoes, applewood bacon, and smoky blue-cheese butter ($28.75). Sushi rolls employ scarves of rice to wrap up chilled interiors, with American-inspired options including the house smoked pull-pork roll filled with hand-cut fries, crispy onion, and thai chili mayo ($8 during lunch; $10.75 during dinner). Like family members dressed as early Neanderthals, lunchtime sandwiches such as the four-cheese grilled cheese ($8) and the slow-braised-beef panini ($12) make for an eclectic take on more familiar items.
At Shogun Japanese and Chinese Bistro, cooks amass an army of fresh ingredients to fire up on a griddle at diners’ tables. Here, shrimp, calamari, and sirloin morph into hibachi-style dinners as they sizzle in the heat and tumble through the air with the help of the chef’s spatula. Fresh fish and rice converge to form sushi such as the crispy roll #24, whose salmon and yellowtail flaunt a sauce as sweet and spicy as a valentine from a jalapeño pepper. The Chinese section of the menu brims with house specialties such as beef with stir-fried string beans and family-style meals of shrimp kow and almond chicken.
Top’s Asian Buffet serves up a tasty spread of Chinese, Japanese, Mongolian, and American cuisine seven days week for both lunch and dinner. Those out for all-you-can-eat lunch ($2.25–$6.75), dinner ($3.25–11.25), or Sunday ($11.25) buffets, priced depending on age, will find a serious selection of soups, salads, fruits, sushi, steaks, Mongolian grilled barbecue, Chinese and Japanese appetizers and entrees, plus a dessert bar with ice cream.
Yotsuba’s skilled sushi chefs sprinkle fresh fish and organic seaweed with low-sodium soy sauce brewed in-house. Tempura and teriyaki dishes steam atop low tables in the West Bloomfield location’s tatami room, where cushy legless seats host floor-level dining in traditional Japanese style. High-backed booths and bar seating at both locations raise patrons off the ground for views of chopstick-wielding chefs tapping out the drum solo from "Wipeout" behind the sushi bar.
The seasoned chefs at Biwako Sushi, led by head chef and owner Andy Kwon, concoct a variety of traditional Japanese and Korean dishes, often experimenting with playful sushi arrangements. Rolls can be found laid out in neatly staggered rainbow rows, organized into the shape of a heart pierced by an arrow, or arranged as tiny dioramas populated with plants, sushi clusters, and tiny sushi traffic lights. Casual splashes of soy sauce and garnishes surround exotic and custom rolls, tightly wrapping ingredients such as tempura shrimp, masago, and eel.
The more than 25-dish menu also encompasses Korean meals such as kalbi, bibimbap, and tonkatsu, letting diners sample a range of flavors without having to stow away in a UN ambassador's luggage. When not crafting dishes in the secrecy of the kitchen, Chef Kwon teaches others the art of sushi-roll preparation in hands-on classes.
While having a split personality is not the healthiest thing for a person, it works well for a restaurant, as evidenced by Shanghai Ichiban, where a lively Japanese steakhouse and intimate/quiet/elegant Chinese dining room happily coexist under one roof. Diners settle around hibachi tables on the restaurant’s Japanese side, where paintings of crashing waves mimic the cacophonous sounds of knives and spatulas as chefs go to work. Around the hibachi grill, chefs flaunt their showmanship and precise cooking skills by juggling their cooking utensils and maneuvering morsels of filet mignon, scallops, or chicken atop the wide, flat grill. In the quieter Chinese dining room, servers present entrees of sesame chicken or spicy chung king pork on white tablecloths. While Chinese cuisine is dominant on this side, the chefs practice their pan-Asian flair as well, serving up Korean dishes, Vietnamese pho, and cool morsels of fresh sushi.