The red teppanyaki tables inside Osaka House host pyrotechnic performances from chefs who quickly slice, toss, and set aflame pieces of meat or veggies. Hibachi entrees run the gamut from chicken and filet mignon to swordfish and lobster, and each dish is accompanied by a shrimp appetizer, soup, salad, vegetables, and seasoned rice. Diners can dig into such favorites as egg rolls and california rolls, or simply bowl them across tables into pyramids made of straws.
BaRa Sushi House keeps the focus on the fish. Its precisely, appealingly arranged sushi and appetizers lean heavily on seafood imported from Tokyo's famous Tsukiji fish market every week. BaRa's chefs greet each day with its very own special plate, constantly editing the menu in the hopes of finally crafting that perfect tiny replica of Michelangelo's David from yellowfin tuna. Sake is always flowing inside the snug, vintage house-turned-diner thanks to Marcus Pakiser, sake sommelier. Guests may dine on the outdoor patio when the weather permits, or host a party for up to 9 in the private tatami room.
At Wild Wasabe, meals are nearly as much about presentation as they are about flavor. The sushi chefs deftly wrap fresh fish and spicy sauces into rolls, then plate them, into edible artworks resembling dragons, sunbursts, or American Gothic. The kitchen also heats up hot soups and entrees, and pours out premium sake, wine, and Japanese beers to complement meals. Diners sip while watching the sushi experts sculpt their appetizing works, or glance at the large flat screen television to fill their eyes as well as their stomachs.
The bamboo steamers sit conspicuously behind the glass counter, spirals of steam escaping their closed lids as guests peer at the expansive menu and consider their options. There are three types of dumplings and four kinds of bao filled with the likes of barbecue pork, Szechuan chicken, coconut custard, and adzuki bean paste. In addition, the menu offers pad thai noodles and banh mi sandwiches. Guests sip loose-leaf teas to complement the meals, soaking in the sun from the large windows or out on the sidewalk patio.
The menu at Ukiyoe reflects 30 years of owner Jin Park refining his approach to Japanese cooking. A selection of more than 50 different sushi rolls daunts indecisive appetites and delights craftsmen looking to put wheels on an edible model car. In addition to Japanese staples such as teriyaki and tempura, the eatery serves maki sushi rolled with calamari, vegetables, and fresh salmon.
Hana’s culinary engineers compose a menu of traditional Japanese fare buoyed by 36 creative specialty rolls, delicate sashimi, noodle and teriyaki plates, and a library of sake libations. The Mt. Hood roll pays homage to its towering namesake with a mound of tempura shrimp and crab salad cascaded with spicy salmon and eel sauce ($9), and the Salmon Generation roll reveres the generation that swims upstream, yet later in life returns to where they were born toting dirty laundry and bulky band equipment ($9). A hot dish of beef teriyaki sates red-meat appetites ($11.50), and yakisoba swirls slippery noodles with chicken or veggies onto plates ($7.50). With a collection of five sake classes, each boasting several vintages that vary in taste and finish, a premium sake flight grants sips with which to hydrate a parched craw ($18).