San Joaquin Magazine honored Cocoro Japanese Bistro & Sushi with the Best Sushi award in its Best of Joaquin issue this year; the restaurant was also featured in the magazine's "Sushi 101" article. More than 130 Yelpers and 30 Yahoo! Locals give Cocoro an average of four stars.
The stylists at Vanity Hair Salon always sit down with clients for a friendly chat before crafting new hairdos. While they ask probing questions and listen intently to responses, they comb through hair and attune to each strand's unique resonant frequency. With this knowledge, they skillfully snip away dead ends and craft flattering styles as hairs fall to the ground like the leaves of a tree that's been pushed out an airplane. When stylists aren't pruning and embellishing mops, they nourish them with conditioning treatments and extract unwanted hair with warm wax.
Flames erupt into the air within feet of feasting customers seated around Sumo Sushi House's hibachi grill. Chefs corral the fire as they sear filet mignon, lobster, and chicken, pairing each meal with fresh-cooked fried rice. Meanwhile, at the sushi bar, sushi chefs roll fresh, seasonal ingredients into a slew of traditional and unique rolls. These offerings range from California and Alaska rolls to a colorful Lady Gaga roll—packed with yellowtail and spicy tuna—and an American Dream roll, a peppy arrangement of lobster, crab, and shrimp tempura that tastes like a promotion.
Mikado Bistro's foodsmiths craft flaming wokfuls of favorite Chinese and Japanese dishes, along with plating delicate slices of fresh sushi. Diners can kick off consumption with the hearty crunch of fried wontons ($3.95), and edamame's ($2.95) boiled soybeans spring from their ancestral pods into waiting mouths. Chopsticks peck like foraging antique hunters at signature sushi rolls, such as the Golden Phoenix, a pile of slender disks of unagi, cucumber, crab, tuna, and avocado ($14.95) traditionally served as still-flaming ashes. Patrons can dive into two-item bento boxes ($11.95) filled with such goodies as vegetable tempura, chicken teriyaki, or sushi rolls, or scoop up helpings of succulent mu shu pork ($6.95) with chewy pancakes.
A childhood spent in Japan as well as Japanese cooking lessons from her mother Sumako helped prepare Maisie Bell for her long career as a sushi chef. In 2009, after a quarter century in the kitchen, Bell opened her eponymous sushi house, where she and her staff prepare made-to-order sushi as well as grilled salmon, beef, and chicken dishes. Cool blues and greens define the interior of the sleekly modern eatery, where patrons tuck into specialty rolls such as Red Dragon, with tempura shrimp and spicy tuna, and the Unknown roll, whose ingredients are awaiting new names from the Witness Protection Program. The kitchen also whips up baked mussels in a spicy cream sauce, beef teriyaki, and traditional japanese curries.
With grills set right into the tables, Torii Japanese Restaurant's cooks prepare meals mere feet away from their diners. And knowing they have an audience, they put on a show, slicing steak at warp speed and tossing scallops into the air. A splash of oil and the grilltop is aflame, cooking chicken and lobster tails as the cooks flip knives and spatulas. Over at the sushi bar, chefs create 14 maki rolls and prepare more than 20 types of nigiri, cutting them into bite-sized pieces. And at the bar, entertainment abounds via nightly karaoke fueled by Japanese beers, cocktails, and sake.