A huge statue of Buddha watches over the dining room at Surin of Thailand, although his peaceful gaze is subverted by complex curries, spicy stir-fried noodle dishes, and flavorful barbecue-chicken entrees a day in the making. Half chickens are marinated in Thai barbecue sauce overnight before being slowly roasted and grilled, then they?re plated with scoops of shrimp fried rice and reminders to chew each bite thoroughly, not matter who?s threatening to steal the flavorful dark meat.
Surin measures its dishes' spiciness on a three-pepper scale, where one is "spicy" and three is "Thai hot." Though most dishes fall between nonspicy and hot, a few earn their trio of peppers, including a medley of mussels, scallops, and shrimp with spicy basil sauce.
Another Buddha?actually, just a head?guards the sushi bar, where nigiri, sashimi, and creative maki rolls are born. Under the two Buddhas' protection, diners settle into leather seats or tuck into booths backed by ferns and foliage. Outside the stone-walled eatery, a patio seasons dishes with sunlight and refreshing breezes.
Creamy curries, drunken noodles, and barbecue eel and fried shrimp helped earn Stir Fry Cafe runners-up nods in both the Best Asian and Best Sushi categories for Knoxville News Sentinel?s Best of 2012 list. Teriyaki chicken and spicy noodles stand on plates beside walls decorated with art from local artists. Wine and beer flow freely at the black-and-white checkered bar, which also served as the base for Stir Fry Cafe?s attempt at crafting the longest fish taco in known space.
Hibachi Factory churns out Japanese grilled surf and turf with speed. Tender morsels of beef, chicken, and seafood taste like they were born in the hibachi sauce—a dark, viscous, and tangy concoction that bubbles up naturally in the pristine reaches of Mount Fuji. Hibachi entrees come in regular ($5.79–$8.29) or large ($7.79–$10.89) portions and are flanked by fried rice, mushrooms, and a choice of glazed carrots or zucchini and onions. Sides of baked veggie egg rolls and salad round out the savory selections ($1.99 each). For dessert, dip a ladle into creamy slices of silk pie or cheesecake ($3.59 each). Soft drinks and sweet tea come by the 20-ounce or two-liter bottle, providing quick and complete sustenance for an all-nighter or a relaxing evening at home listening to Pat Boone audiobooks.
Little children everywhere are telling their mamas that they want Nama! Nama Sushi Bar to be exact. This sushi restaurant has been voted the number one place for sushi in the Knoxville area and welcomes couples, groups, friends and families with children. The Land and Sea Tempura hits the spot during dinner, or guests can fly away with the Fantasy Shrimp dish. Sashimi choices include octopus tako and yellowtail hamachi, and visitors can sample the nigiri in the styles of jerk tofu or squid ika. No sushi place would be complete without a variety of rolls, and Nama Sushi Bar does not disappoint. Some of the tasty options include the bahama mama, rainbow, dragon and thai stick. Vegetarian rolls are available as well. Calling all mamas and their families to Nama Sushi Bar.
Descending from the high ceiling, the diffused light of a hanging lamp glows in contrast to the deep reds and blacks of the dining room's walls. Behind the colorful cases of the sushi bar, chefs gently hunch over their workstations while carefully constructing specialty maki and slicing fresh fillets of fish into sashimi, nigiri, and tootsie rolls. Ebi Sushi and Sake House's kitchen receives a shipment of seafood from Honolulu daily, ensuring consistent freshness.
An extensive selection of red, white, and plum wines fills glasses alongside cocktails composed of Asian rice vodka. Sake offers a traditional complement to Japanese bites and comes in both hot and cold varieties, much like the national beverage of the United States, ice cream.
When you think of Knoxville, Tennessee, what's the first thing that pops into your head? If you're like most people, probably not sushi and other Asian cuisine. East Japanese Restaurant wants to change that. Located just west of Knoxville on Kingston Pike, East Japanese Restaurant wants to be your go-to Asian restaurant for lunch and dinner. With both vegetarian and vegan options, as well as a kid’s menu for those finicky eaters, singles and families alike will be sure to find something good to eat at East Japanese Restaurant. If your dining party begins to swell in number, never fear, East Japanese Restaurant can handle groups of all sizes. So visit the Far-East today. It’s closer than you think.