Eating international fare locally eliminates the woes associated with trans-Atlantic travel, such as jet lag and oar splinters. Stamp your palate’s passport with today’s Groupon: for $15, you get $30 worth of Japanese cuisine at Meiji-En Japanese Restaurant.
Meiji-En's talented chef calls upon 15 years of palate-pleasing experience to assemble an authentic Japanese menu scripted in fresh seafood, rice, and noodles. Diners settle into booths under a wooden pergola traced with plant tendrils before firing the gustatory start pistol with spicy, deep-fried calamari ($4.95). Patrons can take trips to the sushi bar to survey the day's selection of specialty rolls, or match their appetites against a menu mainstay such as the Volcano roll ($8.95), which percolates with baked scallop, crab, and cucumber flavors. Guests can also convert the protein-packed, 10-piece sashimi platter ($13.95) into the raw energy necessary to defeat the Lincoln Memorial in an arm-wrestling match. Forks swan dive into a bowl of yakisoba's pan-fried yellow noodles ($6.95) to retrieve bites of sautéed veggies and tofu.
The restaurant's drink list supplants thirst with nine sake varieties and four sake concoctions, including the Meiji-En Sunset ($6.50) that twists pearl and plum wine for a sweet-and-refreshing libation. Meiji-En's inviting, earthy setting hosts bountiful feasts amid wooden chairs and tabletops, blue carpets, and high ceilings to accommodate jolly green giants.