The chefs at Tenka Asian Bistro don't hide in the kitchen while concocting their mouthwatering Japanese cuisine. Whether they're searing up meats on tableside hibachi grills or tranquilly crafting rolls at the sushi bar, these chefs entertain their guests with flashy cooking techniques right in the dining room. The result of these culinary performances is a vast menu of sushi and sashimi and dazzling displays of seared hibachi scallops, filet mignon, lobster, and chicken. Meanwhile behind closed kitchen doors, another team of chefs whips up Chinese specialties such as lo mein, egg foo young, and fried rice out of the sightlines of hungry guests and vengeful Medusas.
An old-fashioned candy showroom, The Candy Hop contains rows of self-serve bins overflowing with mainstream and hard-to-find candies. Two rainbow-hued walls of candy containers?one showcasing Jelly Belly jellybeans, the other, M&M's?hang alongside shelves of gummies and sugar-free chocolates. The selection even includes vintage candies and fresh fudge. Though the shop is self-serve, staff are always on-hand to help throw a party: its catering division provides candy-banquet-bar planning, delivery, and custom color matching for a range of events.
The culinary techniques used at Sake Hana Asian Cuisine & Sushi Bar originated overseas, but most of the restaurant's fresh, seasonal ingredients come from local, sustainable sources. Chefs fashion lobster and snow-crab meat into specialty rolls, grill salmon with ginger-garlic sauce, and sear tender steak hibachi-style. Potted orchids decorate the top of a curving bar, behind which servers pour wine, beer, and sake.
Bistro Bakery & Deli's artisanal flour specialists whip up batches of freshly baked goods to stock its hearty breakfast, lunch, bakery, and catering menus. Dive face-first into the gravitational pull of the more than 20 bagel varieties, including asiago cheese, spinach-garlic, and pumpernickel ($0.79 each; $7/dozen). Crying stomachs are serenaded with the savory tunes of the Bistro B.L.T. ($5.59) and the Tuscany salad ($5.99), and lonely hands can temporarily embrace the raspberry-chipotle-chicken wrap ($6.99) or the veggie delight ($5.79), which complements marinated artichoke hearts with roasted red peppers and provolone. The culinary artists at Bistro Bakery & Deli also proffer a selection of custom-designed cakes ($18.99+) crowned in a cappuccino mousse, pistachio buttercream, chocolate ganache, or Vanilla Ice sound bites.
Determined to make the best pizza possible, the chefs of Elsa's Eatery traveled to Italy, New York, and Boston's culture-rich North End in the name of research. Upon returning to Shrewsbury, they went to work crafting the best Neapolitan-style pizza possible, hand-made each day. They top it with ingredients such as pesto-infused mozzarella, sliced meatballs, and grilled chicken, before sliding the pie onto an imported pizza stone and baking it to a perfect crisp. But Elsa's isn't just about pies—they also have an extensive menu with other gourmet Italian specials and steak and seafood entrees. Most recently, they have started to present brunch on Saturdays and Sundays, boldly defying the international ban non-Sunday brunches.
For 30 years, the culinary family behind CJ's Steakloft has whipped up a spread of savory steak-house fare, including juicy slabs of beef, hearty pastas, and fresh fish. Cuts of prime rib fill plates with tender helpings ($19.95), and Parisienne sirloin ($18.95) proves its whereabouts with an airtight alibi of thick, tasty grill marks. Pasta entrees, such as the creamy chicken-and-broccoli alfredo ($14.95) unite starch and protein in a palatable symphony of flavor, and seafood dishes such as baked stuffed haddock deliver artfully prepared packages of fresh, flaky ocean fare ($16.95). Combination dinners unite land and sea with mix-and-match entrees such as steak tips and lobster accompanied by an edible aide-de-camp of potato or vegetable ($24.95).