Flashing knives and spurting flames dazzle diners as the chefs at Kuma Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar theatrically sear entrees on the tabletop hibachi grills. Equally comfortable with cooking vegetables and meats, the chefs can shuffle a number of them across the grill's iron surface, including scallops, chicken, or filet mignon. Meanwhile, the sushi chefs gingerly slice pieces of fresh salmon and tuna behind their bar—unlike traditional bartenders, who rarely slice bottles into neat sections. Their work does not stop there, however, because they also carefully layer orders of salmon nigiri that can emerge alongside a familiar or inventive sushi roll, which arrives in either six or eight bite-sized pieces.
Natives of Hawaii and California, Howard and Anita Hsu brought more than a love of surfing with them when they moved across the country. They also transported the west coast's blend of beach culture, healthy eating, and seafood-infused Mexican fare. At the locally owned and operated Gezzo's Surf & Grille, the brother-sister team oversees a staff committed to fresh in-house ingredients free of preservatives that crafts everything from salsa to tacos filled with seasoned tilapia, tofu, grilled steak, and chicken. The restaurant also recently launched a mobile food truck to serve its fare throughout Atlanta—another parallel to Hawaiian restaurants that send surfers out to deliver fish tacos to sharks off-shore.
Itza Taco Sports Grill combines south-of-the-border dishes with a casual atmosphere to create a welcoming spot for noshing on cultured eats and catching the big game. Take in the day's fiercest football, basketball, or spelling-bee matchup while perusing the flavor-filled menu. Rev an appetite engine with the warm and crispy chips and salsa ($2.99) before alighting on the fish tacos ($8.99), served swimming with a school of delicious fixings. Belly up to the spice-filled buffalo-chicken wrap ($6.99) or sate the hunger of a little-league tablemate with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich ($3.99), which tastes even tastier inside the room full of colorful, booming plasma-screen TVs. To complete the feast, snag a pint from the impressive beer selection that provides the ideal sauce for fry dipping should the ketchup run dry.
The first IHOP—the dream of founders Al and Jerry Lapin—opened in 1958 in Toluca Lake, California, and was originally dubbed the International House of Pancakes. Since then, rapid expansion has led to myriad milestones across the company's colorful history, from introducing its modern IHOP acronym in 1973 to its 1,000th restaurant opening in Layton, Utah, in 2001. Today, the company stands strong with around 1,500 locations across North and Central America, each one an enthusiastic dispenser of pancakes, french toast, and tables constructed entirely out of bacon. Though IHOP is known as a bastion of breakfast, it also stays open during the day and into the evening, delivering lunch and dinner as well.
Itza Sports Bar and Grill's menu of American cuisine brims with numerous seafood dishes, sandwiches, steaks, and beers. Quell appetites' abandonment issues with Itza Chips, homemade potato chips sprinkled with blue-cheese crumbles ($5.50). A wide variety of fish, including salmon, mahi mahi, grouper, and catfish, make appearances on formerly empty plates, and blackened or fried tilapia burrows under flour tortillas, pico de gallo, and sour cream before metamorphosing into fish tacos ($8.99). Pack stomachs tighter than carry-on luggage with slow-roasted baby back ribs ($19.99 for a full rack, $10.99 for a half rack) or Cajun pasta, a spicy fusion of seasoned chicken breast, shrimp, sautéed red and green peppers, alfredo sauce, and Cajun rice ($13.99). While savoring one of the many beers on tap, gaze into the eyes of one of Itza's 25 high-definition TVs, gander at nature on the outdoor patio, or bask in the spectacle of various nightly events and entertainment.
Smoky aromas waft from a hickory pit at O.B.'s BBQ's bustling family eatery, combining with savory scents from the menu's farm-raised catfish and juicy brisket. Cookout captains slather full racks of ribs ($19.95) in O.B.'s special sauce, with meaty options including the original Memphis-style or baby back ribs. Lure hickory-tickled chicken breasts into troughs of sweet barbecue sauce sandwiches ($7.95) or reap the benefits of lumber aromatherapy after succulent beef brisket steeps in a sauna of woody vapors ($10.95). O.B.'s fried catfish filet glistens between crunchy slabs of texas toast ($7.95). Supplement smoldering entrees with one of O.B.'s made-from-scratch sides ($0.85–$4.50), including its signature Brunswick stew ($3.50 for 8-oz. bowl) or hearty cornbread ($0.85), and hunger-demolishing desserts ($2.59–$3.99).