In 1971, Jimmy Nishiyama introduced the city of Las Vegas to Japanese hibachi cuisine. Three decades later, and the friends have stayed very much in touch. During that time, Geisha House, Nishiyama's brainchild, has grown to fill three locations and eight menu pages. Colorful specialty sushi rolls, such as the baked Japanese Lasagna—cream cheese and mayo atop a crabmeat and avocado roll—make fitting partners for grilled lobster, filet mignon, or scallops in hibachi dinners. Nearly 30 varieties of sake trip merrily across the palate, while the Geisha martini blends sake with plum wine and a treasure trove of James Bond jokes.
For 35 years, streams of loyal customers have flocked to Michi Sushi, savoring the crispy tempura seafood and veggies, the sushi culled form freshly flown-in fish, and savory bowls of udon soup. Like misunderstood genius folk art sculptors, Michi's chefs create traditional products from innovative and inventive ingredients, resulting in dishes such as barbecued eel over beds of macadamia nuts, or Bay Area-themed makis dressed with spicy Korean sauce, tempura crumbs, jalapenos, and avocado. Diners gather amid the restaurant's charming Japanese wood and paper-screen décor to chow down on mango salmon salads and beef teriyaki or order catered feasts for weddings and parties.
Seated at the long, curving sushi bar, diners at Super TGI’s Sushi get a close look at the chefs’ artistry: slicing and artfully arranging plates of fresh sashimi, perching lacy tempura atop bowls of udon noodles, and, of course, rolling dazzlingly colorful maki. But their most impressive feat might be entirely mental—they also must have a command of the nearly 100 types of specialty rolls on the menu. Of course, the ultra-creative names might well be a good mnemonic aid. No one will look askance if you order, for instance, a Mammamiya (unagi and hamachi), an eBay (a classic California roll plus shrimp and tobiko), a Miss Netscreen (tuna, salmon, and shrimp rolled in cucumber), or a Brian (seven kinds of fish, not counting the shrimp tempura).
Seafood doesn’t exhaust the abilities of the restaurant, a new outpost of the original TGI's Sushi in Campbell. Beyond the sushi bar’s red paper lanterns, groups sup on hot dishes such as sukiyaki, teriyaki, and the classic breaded pork dish tonkatsu.
A giant painting of a cat dressed in a sushi chef’s garb making sushi hangs high up on a wall inside Kikusushi. It overlooks tables covered in magenta linens, bamboo privacy dividers, and fish tanks with colorful swimmers. The playful atmosphere continues into the menu, with cleverly named rolls such as the dragon roll, plated to look like a dragon, and the Cholesterol Bomb, stuffed with tuna and quail eggs. Hot meals range from chicken katsu to beef teriyaki.
The family-owned and family-operated sushi shop has been slinging high-quality fish into the mouths of omega-3-craving San Joseans at their new location in Willow Glen since 2009. Traditional and creative concoctions inhabit the extensive lunch and dinner menus. Starters such as the ika kara-age, with its tender, fried Monterey calamari and balsamic soy sauce ($5.25), offer a pleasing beginning to any meal. Redeem your Groupon Tuesday–Thursday for a complimentary edamame appetizer. The Sushi combination dinner ($16.25), which includes one entree plus your choice of two rolls (choose from California, tekka, and kappa), makes a perfect base to absorb any of Yuki Sushi's sakes. A bountiful selection of bento combos are available. Noodle lovers will slurp sublimely from their selection of udons and sobas, and herbivores can peruse the fish-free vegetarian entrees for a selection of palate pleasers. For those preferring a dash of color in their carbs, brown rice is also available.
Dishes of salmon tartare and bacon-fried rice glide through the dining room of The Red Crane, as if imitating the flight of the restaurant's namesake. They land atop crisp white tablecloths, which cover tables dotted with glowing tea candles. In the kitchen, chefs prepare other contemporary renditions of classic Asian cuisine, using traditional recipes to create teriyaki sauce and enhancing other dishes with modern design principles. Brimming with tuna, salmon, hamachi, and three types of vegetables, the chefs' signature rainbow ceviche is more colorful than a sunset during a paintball tournament.