At Sakura Garden, diners don?t have to choose between Chinese food or sushi?they can enjoy them both in a single meal before washing it down with an Asian beer or fruit-flavored sake. At the corner sushi bar, chefs combine vinegared rice, seaweed, fresh fish, and vegetables into artfully prepared dishes such as the Sakura Garden special roll, a colorful mix of tuna, salmon, crab, eel, and avocado rolled up in soy paper, then drizzled in a housemade sauce and flying-fish roe. The Chinese dishes are just as fresh and delicious; choose from a number of pork, chicken, beef, or shrimp entrees served with white or brown rice.
The chefs at The Eastern Pearl may specialize in gourmet Cantonese dishes, but they don't always limit themselves to the flavors of South China. An expansive menu celebrates the diversity in Cantonese food while also drawing from other regions of China and Hong Kong, and spices are used only in moderation to put the focus on the meats and vegetables. Chicken, beef, pork, and fish are the focal points of colorful plates ranging in flavor from sweet and sour to bold and spicy. House specialties, meanwhile, include a massive peking duck platter and flaming prawns that can be used to light romantic candles. And it isn't just the cuisine that pays tribute to other cultures: lavish interiors whisk diners away to warmer climes with accents of saffron and red. Thin dark-wood partitions with geometric designs divide the booths, and replicas of the famous Qin terracotta warriors stand guard on one wall.
On the shores of Lake Ontario, two-tiered lakeside decks house tables crowded with plates of seafood and seared steaks while diners enjoy the setting sun. Since the 1920s, Castaways has been a shorefront destination for hungry travelers, serving up everything from fresh seafood to their specialty Cajun-rubbed, blackened prime rib. Inside, nautical-themed memorabilia decorates the walls, and a framed etching of a tall ship overlooks a long wooden bar made entirely from recycled peg legs. Diners can enjoy their meal out on the heated, two-tier patio or indoors while being warmed by the fireplace.
New Wasabi's chefs tap into old-fashioned Eastern culinary traditions when preparing dishes from Japan and China. To showcase Japanese cooking methods, they sizzle steaks on a hibachi-style grill, top them with teriyaki sauce, or slice them into the shape of Sadaharu Oh’s silhouette. Their Chinese recipes infuse chicken with flavors ranging from sweet to spicy to nutty. Several appetizers arrive on yacht-shaped platters, a subtle hint that the kitchen teems with shrimp, octopus, and other seafood. The love boat sends a more direct message by floating 36 pieces of sushi and sashimi across the dining room.
The Original Crab Shack hauls in fresh fish, crab, lobster, shrimp, and clams every day from the ports of Boston Harbor, often getting the seafood in less than 12 hours after it comes off the boats. In the kitchen, cooks transform the catches into seafood through the power of steam or a fryer, filling pots with clams and lobster or baskets with tender fried shrimp and clam strips. Behind their full bar, which is decorated with fairy lights and nautical décor such as anchors, cheery bartenders pour beers or wine and mix specialty cocktails. Light blue walls, punctuated with Cape Cod–style windows, surround the interior of Crab Shack, which is filled with small tables as well as two 10-seater farm tables in the center of the room.
• For $15, you get $30 worth of authentic Irish fare during dinner from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday–Thursday • For $5, you get $10 worth of authentic Irish fare during lunch from noon to 3 p.m. Shamrock Jack's invokes the spirit of authentic Irish cuisine with original recipes, dishing out a menu of grilled steaks and fresh seafood. Patrons can satisfy the wanderlust of evening appetites with the dublin broil, a grilled sirloin steak tucked into a bed of garlic mashed potatoes and serenaded with a drizzled lullaby of Jack's gravy ($17.99). Deli favorites, steaks, and seafood deliciously crowd the lunch menu like tourists in a fanny pack museum.