A venerable textbook of sushi history, the engaging Chef Joe brings more than 20 years of Japanese culinary experience to the Mt. Fuji cutting boards. Each sushi-making class begins with the arts-and-crafts basics of fish-related construction using nori, rice, and rubber cement to build delicious rolls ready-made for consumption. Chef Joe will also clue you in on the best places to buy ingredients for three sushi mainstays: the classic california roll, spicy-tuna hand rolls, and salmon nigiri. The BYOB policy lets you alternate your detailed maki handiwork with sips of your favorite wine or beer (Mt. Fuji supplies the glasses, along with additional alcohol, which may be purchased on-site). Once you've finished exercising your chopsticks, show off your ability to shatter glass with a well-chosen Mariah Carey ballad at the restaurant-sponsored karaoke party after class.
When it came time for the team at Johnny Carino?s to come up with some new recipes, they began rifling through their personal cooking histories. Executive chef Chris Peitersen took his first kitchen job at a barbecue joint when he was 14, so he was primed to create Italian baby back ribs. By infusing brown sugar barbecue sauce with balsamic vinegar imported from Modena, he?s given the marinade a more acidic bite than typical barbecue sauces. As the ribs slowly roast and char on an oak grill, he bastes on his creation before finishing the dish with a dusting of parmesan.
The ribs are one of Carino?s many menu items that follow the restaurants? approach of classic Italian preparations modified by forward-thinking flavor combinations. Diners will find a crispy pepperoni burger capped with mozzarella and fried pepperoni, or saut?ed tilapia spiced with garlic and jalape?o. Other signature dishes include the 16-layer lasagna, Skilletinis that sizzle with spaghetti and a choice of meat, and tiramisu made from scratch.
Hot Dog on a Stick Founder Dave Barham opened his first Hot Dog on a Stick in Santa Monica in 1946, and the company has since burgeoned into an employee-owned franchise that's more than 100 eateries strong and spans 11 states. Best known for a 100% turkey hot dog dunked in corn-bread batter made from Dave's mother's recipe and cooked in soy oil, Hot Dog on a Stick also pioneered the dipping and be-sticking of mild american and spicy jalapeño jack cheese. Smiling employees in red-, white-, and blue-striped uniforms with, as Dave put it, "a splash of lemonade," hand over cherry, lime, sugar-free, or original lemonade that they make fresh every two hours by squeezing Ventura County lemons until they cry.
Andaman Kitchen’s chefs fill their pantries with locally sourced ingredients to craft dishes that strike the balance of sweet, sour, and spicy flavors essential in Thai cooking. They simmer tender pieces of chicken and pork in creamy red or green curries and drizzle lemony Thai-style dressing onto troops of deep-fried shrimp. Out in the dining room, sky blue walls and decorative Eastern statues surround tables scattered with a variety of noodle dishes, from plates of pad thai to bowls of glass-noodle soup that must be handled carefully to avoid shattering.
A vine-laced trellis arches over the sidewalk that leads to Tiburon Fine Dining, an unassuming space that once housed a fruit stand within its brick confines. Subtle lighting imbues the dining room with an understated elegance that extends to the menu. Chefs drizzle international meats and seafood with savory reduction sauces and serve all entrees with a dollop of homemade sorbet.
Hunt Mysteries offers lighthearted and interactive faux-murder entertainment that lets dinner guests put on their sleuthing sombreros to help solve the whodunit. Boccia’s and Spaghetti Mama’s provide the locations for a bevy of different shows, including the mafia family thriller The Altos: Lower Than Sopranos, Hunt Mysteries' original comedy murder mystery An Oscar-Winning Confession, and more. There will be special food, beverage, and dessert options for in-show consumption, but they are not included in the ticket price. Most shows begin at 7 p.m., when the Clue-esque actors arrive and mingle in character with guests for half an hour, perform the opening scene, and then enjoy mingling and dining with patrons while subtly injecting mysterious hints into their dialogue, dances, and hilarious comic antics. After each show’s featured murder, guests get 20 minutes to quiz the actors and solve the puzzle.