This Chicago restaurant has remained a perennial "hot spot", and kept the quality high. This is one of those rare restaurants that carves out a niche of its own and becomes an "old standby". Trendy, good food seems to persist at this River North gem - if you haven't been, you should go today.
When you do enter the half club / half restaurant in Summer, make sure you reserve an outdoor table, either on the terrace in front of the restaurant, or downstairs on the river - a unique spot in the city.
After many meals at this Japanese "steakhouse", I can recommend a number of dishes that constitute a perfect meal.
Begin with the lobster spring roll - crispy and hot, rich chunks of lobster wrapped in a thin pastry and salted lightly with a side of mango salsa are a delight to the senses. Perhaps a richer dish than what one envisions when Japanese cusine comes to mind, but perfection in a hot appetizer.
My favorite speciality of the house from the sushi bar is the Maguro Moriwase - two thick slices of Toro, Otoro and Chu-Toro, succulent parts of the Tuna that are of the highest quality in the Midwest.
Other sushi dishes are well-done and taste as if you were at the fish market in Tokyo - I don't know the secret, but the purveyors of Japonais' seafood are clearly artisans. Other favorites include barbeque pork "manju buns" and various gyoza.
For entrees, the Samuri Tuna Steak and Le Quack Japonais (Roast Duck) are excellent choices. If you make it further than this, you should look to a complete and creative dessert menu, including the signature "donuts with green tea semifreddo", a rich and subtle dish that caps off a perfect meal.
Hopefully, you will find a time to host your friends and family at the best Japanese Steakhouse in the Midwest.