Throughout the week, Bounce-N-Around buzzes with activity as kids scramble and jump over the springy landscapes of inflatable bouncers. Arcade games test hand-eye coordination and aptitude at space invading, and electric kiddie rides—such as horses, cars, and helicopters—bob back and forth in their own area. A mini movie theater provides a scaled-down, all-ages cinema experience, complete with tiered seating.
Drawing on 25 years working in prominent Thai restaurants, owners Oddy and sister, Kanchana, have lined Thai Cafe's menu with recipes from their home digs of Bangpoo––a village southeast of Bangkok on the Gulf of Thailand. Striving always to balance the four basic Thai tastes of salty, sweet, sour/bitter, and hot, the duo also instills a precise flavor profile through meticulous knife work. Finely cutting ingredients into smaller pieces ensures seasoning coverage, stir-fry crispness, and an ego boost for the self-conscious baby corns.
Butter-hued walls prepare senses for yellow-, red-, and green-curry dishes insulated with tender morsels of chicken and beef. Skilled sushi artists slice sashimi and form hand rolls from yellowtail and tempura shrimp, and chef specialties dispatch from the kitchen with Thai barbecue, crispy catfish, and roasted duck––many of which have been left to marinate or cook overnight. Thai Cafe also conveniently represents each dish's spice level by placing two red peppers beside hot dishes, three beside Thai hot dishes, and an invisible pepper beside secret-recipe dishes for the eatery's magician clientele.
Kyoto Japanese Restaurant’s chefs prepare a sprawling menu of authentic Japanese cuisine that includes sushi and steak. Their hibachi dinners whirl together chicken, steak, shrimp, and salmon, along with garden salads, noodles, or fried rice. They also leverage their kitchen skills to make creative selections such as the sunshine roll, a blend of spicy salmon, avocado, white tuna, and tobiko, which must be eaten while wearing tanning goggles. In addition to lunch, dinner, and take-out options, the restaurant also boasts an all-you-can-eat menu that offers a selection of the kitchen's teriyaki, noodles, and sushi rolls.
The multitalented chefs at Café Asia Raleigh draw culinary influences from all over Asia as they devise a menu of cooked entrees and artfully rolled sushi. While sitting in black leather booths or at cherry-wood tables, diners catch whiffs of alluring aromas coming from the kitchen, where culinary wizards conjure up shrimp tempura appetizers, miso soups, and noodle and rice dishes, including lobster pad thai and chicken teriyaki served with steamed vegetables. Flavors from the ocean star in the restaurant’s sushi selection, which includes rainbow rolls with five types of fish and spider rolls with soft-shell crab, avocado, cucumber, and scallions.
Blues and reds fill the dining-room walls at Tokyo House Japanese Restaurant, which features a menu of Japanese favorites, including nigiri and maki sushi, many types of noodle dishes, and hibachi entrees. Diners can watch the chefs at work at a sushi bar as they craft special rolls such as the Scary Jerry with mild or spicy yellowtail, tuna, and salmon on top of a crunchy roll with scallop.
With consummate showmanship, hibachi chefs grill lobster tails and shrimp in front of guests in Ginza Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar’s modern dining room. Flames from the hibachi grill gleam off black tabletops surrounded by chairs arranged in a U-shape. Behind the sushi bar, chefs prepare california rolls alongside specialties such as the Mayflower, whose spicy tuna and fish eggs evoke the sea life that pilgrims used to catch by hand and throw at trees they suspected of practicing witchcraft. In the kitchen, cooks craft more traditional dishes such as chicken and salmon glazed in teriyaki sauce or veggies and shrimp fried tempura-style.