With a splash of oil, the teppanyaki grill erupts into an orange blaze. Not far off, chefs slice and roll fresh seafood at the sushi bar. Each of Bayridge Sushi's three locations immerses guests in the Japanese dining experience, complemented by stylish, modern interiors with touches such as lantern-like lighting, flat-screen televisions, and chopsticks hand-carved by master carpenters. In addition to its array of sushi and Japanese dishes, the menu also offers Japanese beers Sapporo and Asahi.
Chef Jim Wu strives to create food that's both delicious and healthy. As such, he never uses food coloring, lard, or MSG in any of his sushi, steak, and other Japanese cuisine creations. His menu also includes a large selection of vegetarian items, and he hosts cooking classes on Saturday mornings at no charge. But after eating his artful maki and other creations, some guests may never want to cook again.
At Bikkuri Sushi, colorful inventive rolls filled with crab, salmon, avocado, and sweet potato share table space with traditional meals of udon soup, beef sukiyaki, chicken donburi, and vegetable tempura. Guests capture ramen noodles, scallops, and dumplings between the pincers of their chopsticks, or savor the complex tastes of ocean-fresh tuna, conch, and yellowtail nigiri. Diners pair bento box feasts of tofu curry and fried rice with sips of dry sake, imported Japanese beers, and potent cocktails. And at the attached Bikkuri Lounge, up to 130 party guests sing karaoke and dance amid the EV sound system, raised dance platform, and LED disco wall lights,.
Modeled after admired urban cafés in the Far East, Bento Cafe whips up hulking portions of fresh, authentic, and multifarious pan-Asian fare in a casual, modern environment. The menu dons an array of reinforced steel options to protect against Richter-scale levels of tummy rumbles. The Bento Box ($7.95 for chicken or tofu, $8.75 for beef, $8.95 for shrimp) lets diners load up on piquant pleasures such as the fire-grilled teriyaki beef or zesty red- curry shrimp over mixed accouterments of white rice, noodles, ginger salad, and other side dishes. Pamper your belly by draping any of the entrées upon a bowl of just noodles ($7.50 for chicken or tofu, $8.25 for beef, $8.50 for shrimp) or rice ($7.25 for chicken or tofu, $7.95 for beef, $8.25 for shrimp). Mouths water for the water-bound treats found in Bento's fresh sushi, which you can buy by the box ($8.95) complete with your choice of two rolls and a California roll, for a total of twelve rolls.
At Mikado Japanese Cuisine, art is not hung, but served horizontally. Expertly sliced fish nestles against lettuce leaves inside a miniature wooden boat, and sprigs of blooming flowers garnish snugly wrapped maki rolls. Clearly, the chefs behind the sushi bar put presentation on the same high pedestal as culinary finesse. Their emphasis on eye-catching edibles has helped to propel the restaurant's growth, transforming it from a single tiny sushi shop into three expanded establishments.
At each one, diners can peruse a menu of 31 specialty rolls, including the Hot Mama—a compilation of smoked salmon, avocado, crab, bay scallops, tempura crunch, and cinnamon-honey sauce. Fresh fish also arrives as nigiri, sashimi, and sushi, creating oceanic complements to grilled hibachi steaks at the Lake Mary location. Tempura shrimp and fried vegetables accompany toasty bowls of udon and soba soups, and appetizers range from skewered barbecue chicken to baby octopus, which only differs from adult octopus in that it never learned to count its tentacles.
At Fujiyama Sushi, sushi chefs painstakingly craft specialty rolls while skilled teppanyaki cooks dazzle patrons, flipping and chopping meals before their eyes. The selection of sushi rolls ranges from basic California and sweet-potato rolls to the chef's specialty Irish roll—a combination of spicy salmon, cream cheese, and asparagus topped with slices of kiwi. For a hot meal, diners can roast their sushi rolls over Bic lighters or opt for dinner around a teppanyaki grill, where preternaturally coordinated cooks fling shrimp onto plates or directly into waiting mouths.