Time for another Blast From The Past post with a restaurant review all rolled into one. I'm nothing if not efficient.
Two years ago on my birthday, my loved one took me to Benihana's for my birthday. And not because my meal would be free since it was my birthday but because I requested to come here. You see at the time, I loved Teppanyaki! We only went to eat Teppanyaki when it was someone's birthday. Not sure why. I think I've only been at Benihana's one other time many years ago. But I have eaten at a couple different Teppanyaki restaurants over the years. I no longer eat Teppanyaki as much these days because I've discovered that all the butter they use to cook the food was making my stomach very unhappy. I still love the whole concept of seeing your food cook right in front of your eyes on an iron griddle, I just eat this stuff a lot less now.
So what is this Teppanyaki? Many of you have probably had Teppanyaki before so you can skip this part. But for those who are not familiar, as I mentioned above, it is a style of Japanese cooking in which food is cooked in front of you on an iron griddle. Normally 8-10 people can sit at each station. The station consists of a large rectangular table with a large griddle in the center of the table and the guests sit on the 3 sides of the table, while the chef occupies the remaining side.
Temp-PURR-a! Biggest lucky cat I've ever seen!
Every Teppanyaki meal starts with a light mushroom broth. I love this little soup.
Then comes the salad. It is simple and I normally only eat a bit of it. It is nothing special.
Then the chef arrives with a push cart loaded up with cooking utensils, cooking oils and seasonings, and all the ingredients needed to prepare everyone's meal order. These chefs take playing with your food to a whole new level. Yes, this is suppose to be the chef preparing fried rice for those who have requested it...Pac-man style!
I think the chef made this for me since it was my birthday. ;) He made the "heart-shape" beat by tapping on the handle of the spatula. I have to admit, that was cool to me. I've seen quite a few of these demos and this "heart-beat" one was by far my favorite. I'm easily amused!
So this is the final product, chicken fried rice and a show! This is actually very good but it is full of butter and sodium. If you eat this, you will be all swollen the next day and will be drinking gallons of water after your meal. I'm just sayin'.
The chef preparing the protein which can consists of shrimp, steak, fish, chicken and even lobster.
The chef paying with the food again. Here, he made a train with onion rings complete with smoke. Choo-choo!
On this particular visit, I ordered the Seafood Yaki udon which is stir-fried udon with shrimp, scallops and pieces of white fish.
And of course I got my birthday ice cream sans the embarrassing birthday song that usually comes with it. My date decided to spare me and ask that they not sing to me. I'm a party pooper!
I had a fun birthday dinner here but haven't been back since this visit. It's because of the butter and sodium, not the lack of entertainment or the fun time you will have at a place like this. Jaa mate ne!
4250 Birch Street
Newport Beach, CA 92660