Working within a lofty stone structure, Geisha Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Bar’s chefs sear Asian entrees on hibachi grills and tuck French-inspired tidbits into specialty sushi. Across the chic, plum-hued dining room, they’ll sizzle succulent hibachi meats, fresh vegetables, and incriminating tax documents atop slick grill tables. Otherwise, they can pull from a dinner menu filled with fusion entrees such as shrimp and lobster risotto, and Jekyll-and-Hyde pad thai.
Named one of the city's best sushi restaurants by Inside Columbia magazine, Sake boasts a cabal of blade-bearing masters that roll, fry, sear, and bake traditional Japanese dishes. Slicing an ocean's worth of sushi, Sake serves nigiri ($4–$6), sashimi ($8–$9) and an assortment of rolls such as the Mizzou roll, stuffed with spicy tuna and topped with tuna sashimi, green onions, chili oil, and unagi sauce ($12). Dinners include the seafood tempura, which tempts with lightly fried prawns, scallops, ika, crab, and vegetables, delivered golden-brown ($14). Sound off calls to draw the seared, baked duck breast into a bath of delicate lemon-honey-sauce glaze and crushed honeyed walnuts ($18). Feel refreshed after washing it all down with the rising sun martini’s concoction of chilled sake, orange juice, and cherry ($6), instead of downing a shot of mouthwash and screaming into a pillow for 10 seconds.
Within the geisha-adorned stained-glass doors at Sakura, chefs serve up a tasty array of Asian favorites and sushi specialties in an elegant atmosphere outfitted with mosaic murals, warm cherry accents, and traditional Japanese artwork. Sushi artisans delight diners by handcrafting classic and unique rolls behind a granite bar before comically slipping on tempura banana peels. The Pitch dubs the unexpected décor accents, such as stuffed pandas and a curtain of plastic crystals, as a “blend of the glamorous and the absurd,” also proclaiming that Sakura is “a good date restaurant” because of its mood lighting and romantic music.
Samurai Chef's chefs slice and dice a diverse menu of food right at the restaurant's smokeless hibachi tables. Customers seeking a detour from the hibachi highway can start their feast with the beef kabob ($4.95), pork dumplings ($4.25), or the fried soft shell crab ($6.95). Carnivorous meat lovers can explore the hibachi options including New York steak ($17.95), salmon ($16.95), and teriyaki duck ($16.95), or combinations such as the samurai seafood lovers dinner, featuring lobster accompanied by sousaphone-playing shrimp and saxophone-tooting scallops from the ocean's underwater jazz band ($29.95). Although your Groupon is only valid for the teppanyaki tables, those with images of raw fish recurring in their dreams can conquer their subconscious with Samurai Chef's plethora of maki, sashimi, and sushi.
Within Blue Yuu’s kitchen, chefs harmonize influences from Japanese, Chinese, Thai, and Korean cuisine. Sushi chefs wrap rice and fresh fish with sheets of nori as servers deliver sizzling iron plates of Szechuan-style seafood and black pepper beef. Hot stoneware cossets bibimbaps, which consist of vegetables, kimchi, egg, and hot sauce. Dulcet sauces coat Chinese dishes such as mango chicken and General Tso’s chicken, and provide contrast to fiery Thai curries.
A chef stands over a flaming tableside teppanyaki grill, twirling his cooking instruments in the air and catching them in each hand. As his audience whistles and cheers, he sears juicy morsels of filet mignon, chicken, and seafood alongside colorful slices of mixed vegetables. Chefs are equally busy behind the sushi counter, artfully arranging more than 100 different types of rolls with fresh tuna, spicy salmon, and crispy shrimp tempura. At the bar, expert mixologists shake premium liquors and juices into cocktails, garnishing them with duos of plump olives and curls of lemon rind. At nightfall as the moon filters in through the skylight windows, the contemporary dining room comes alive with glimmering televisions, lively music, and friends debating the existence of wood nymphs over drinks.