The tableside grill sizzles, searing flavorful slices of steak and moist squares of salmon. A chef keeps careful watch on his proteins, summoning pillars of flame to add extra heat, dicing meat with lightning dexterity, and corralling jumbo shrimp with a bullwhip to complete the culinary show. This is the scene at Kabuto Japanese Steak Seafood & Sushi, where food is as much spectacle as it is art.
Besides cooked-to-order hibachi specialties, the restaurant keeps a sushi bar stocked with fresh seafood. Here, experts hand-roll favorite maki, such as spicy tuna or california rolls, or draw on more inventive ingredients—wine sauce, mango, strawberry—for their house specialty rolls. But whether guests seek food that is flame-kissed or flame-free, each dish stands out against the decor's elegantly understated tableau.
Sleek light fixtures dangle from Kohana Japanese Restaurant's ceiling and subtly illuminate a tidily minimal fleet of indigo and white chairs, booths abutting wavy-lined wall paneling, and plates featuring eats carefully crafted and presented by the chefs. Sharply dressed in the only two colors that can be worn together, black and white, servers march out with precisely sliced sections of signature dishes such as the Phoenix specialty roll, which combines spicy tuna, snow crab, and avocado with a multifaceted dressing. Non-sushi selections, such as crunchy shrimp tempura and baked salmon with eel sauce, also pair well with Kohana's selection of wine, beer, and sake.
Thanks to its full menu of Chinese, Japanese, and Thai fare, Fulin's Asian Cuisine was named Best Nashville Chinese Food in Best of Citysearch, and the fine-dining establishment was voted Best Chinese by readers of the Tennessean Toast of Music City Awards for five straight years. Sushi chefs craft rolls such as the Honada, a deep-fried spicy-tuna roll with the chef's special sauce, and the Rock City roll with shrimp tempura and avocado. Thai dishes are also available, like the curry seafood thai-style casserole with shrimp, scallops, and crab. Glasses of wine, sake, and signature cocktails from the full bar accompany dishes.
Ensconced in wooden accents and dotted with Japanese artwork, Sakura Japanese Restaurantserves up handcrafted morsels in a cozily festive atmosphere. Diners can perch at sleek wooden tables or along the curved bar, stealing glimpses of chefs painstakingly rolling sushi or slicing meats and veggies with precision. A cascading stone garden brimming with verdant plants lounges in the corner, and a TV sits high in the ornate shelf behind the bar, entertaining guests with the delightful sight of colorful pixels arranging themselves in the exact pattern of tomorrow’s weather.
Ru San’s chefs blend the subtle flavors of timeless Japanese cooking with the artistry of contemporary cuisine, creating edible masterpieces of fresh sushi, umami noodle dishes, and tender-seafood steaks. Diners sample delicate morsels of roe or smoked-shrimp nigiri, or dive into plates of specialty sushi maki, artfully plated to create likenesses of cucumber flower stalks and red-tuna valentine hearts. Far from a mere sushi bar, Ru San employs chefs that can bring to life a wealth of savory ramen and soba soups, crispy, dippable tempuras, and elegant seafood dishes—such as the sweet mocha cake scallops, or soy-butter grilled sea bass.
Tokyo Japanese Steak House is a feast for the eyes, nose, and ears as well as the mouth. In addition to "laser lights in the lobby" and "sushi in martini glasses," as noted by Nashville Scene, hibachi chefs stand by your table and make theater out of food preparation, tossing around teriyaki meats and tofu dishes and making puppet shows with chopsticks.
There’s also a wide selection of sushi here. Try the signature Tennessee roll, which incorporates spicy tuna topped with fish, eel sauce, and tempura flakes. Also worth a try: the barbecue eel over sushi rice.