At BC Osaka, the chefs aren’t merely makers of food. Instead, they’re ringmasters, orchestrating the lively chaos of a hibachi grill into a meal that’s one part entree and two parts performance. At the island hibachi stations, chefs show off their mastery of food prep and knife work as they elaborate on an ancient Japanese barbecue tradition, resulting in tasty meals of filet mignon, garlic lobster, and teriyaki chicken. Each showman-cook-in-training practices their craft in front of their veteran workmates⎯many of them with up to 25 years of experience⎯for at least six months before earning a spot behind the grill and the traditional steak-shaped epaulettes of a professional hibachi chef.
In addition to hibachi shows, BC Osaka also houses a sushi bar lined with red-leather barstools, where guests spin in anticipation of tempura-shrimp dragon rolls topped with creamy avocado fillets, or exotic morsels of sea urchin and giant clam. A buffet also sates any endless appetite that makes its way past the dining area’s dark polished wood and tasseled Japanese lanterns.
Though its Cantonese and Mandarin cuisine reflects some of China's oldest culinary traditions, Dragon Inn's Chicago Heights location also nurtures an evolving menu that includes sushi. Specialties include the 9-ounce hong kong porterhouse steak and the crispy duck. Accompanying housemade sauces are customized to guests' tastes, adding flavor to entrees and egg rolls that are folded by hand and filled with pork, shrimp, and vegetables.
Sesame Inn’s mouth-watering menu whisks guests on culinary journeys through China, Japan, and Thailand. Seventeen stir-fried dishes, including spicy sichuan green beans and kung pao chicken with crunchy peanuts and water chestnuts, spring from traditional Chinese recipes like gold nuggets spring from fortune cookies. Chefs tuck chicken, beef, or shrimp into beds of pineapple fried rice or pad thai’s nest of egg-laced rice noodles. If diners prefer their entrees uncooked, the Kama Kaze maki showcases two types of tuna, and the vegetable maki arrives rolled with spinach, cucumber, gourd, pickles, and asparagus.
The chefs at Cantonesia Restaurant steam and stir-fry authentic Cantonese cuisine and Mandarin fare in the heart of Chinatown. Noodles brim with veggies, fresh seafood, and deep-fried meats served alongside belly-warming soups. The house specialty, Cantonese-style chop suey, blends a tasty trinity of sliced meats, egg, and vegetables, which diners can use to prove Plato’s tripartite theory of the soul. Waiters convey signature tropical mai tais as patrons unwind in red leather seats amid the soft lighting of chinese paper lanterns.
Located in Chinatown Square, Tasty City draws inspiration from Hong Kong cafés and street vendors to dish up a blend of Asian and Western cuisines. The eatery’s Chinese name translates to “a thousand tastes,” a title chefs aim to achieve with an extensive menu that harnesses fresh ingredients and a taste-bud personality test. A kitchen window allows diners to observe chefs as they whip up Japanese-style ramen noodles, smoothies made with 13 different fresh fruits, and dozens of baked, fried, and rolled rice entrees. In the dining room, a fleet of TVs neighbor large murals depicting trees and flowers, recessed blue lighting glows next to lights tucked into wavy orange ceiling pieces, and WiFi floats through the air.