Florida Guide > Dining
Kobe Japanese Restaurant
Kobe Japanese restaurants are situated in several of the main areas of Orlando such as International Drive & Colonial Drive as well as Clearwater and Tampa. They have won the Florida Foodie awards Readers Choice for the best Japanese restaurant from 1998 to 2003 and so we decided to go and see if we agreed!
On entering we were asked if we wanted to sit at one of the tables where a chef would cook for us. The other option is to eat in the restaurant from a menu of prepared Japanese dishes and Sushi. We decided we wanted the whole experience so chose the ‘Hibachi’table.
Tables seat ten people and we had only a short wait to be shown to our table. If there are less than ten in your party they will combine you with others to make a full table. When seated we chose from chicken, lobster, steak, shrimps and scallops for our main course. All entrees include a clear Japanese soup which was beautifully light and tasty and a salad which was served with a delicious peanut style dressing. When we had finished, our Geisha (waitress) introduced us to our chef and then the fun began!
The chef started by juggling eggs before catching them on an upturned cleaver! When the children were a little shy and did not clap he sported a very fierce expression which guaranteed that they showed much more appreciation for his next trick! He cooked various vegetables and fried rice, serving us each onto a plate while he cooked the steak etc that we had ordered.
At various times he flamed the food, much to the children’s delight and demonstrated some very clever knife work. As each type of meat or seafood was cooked to perfection he served us from the hot plate. We were so full that we couldn’t manage one of the several desserts on offer. The family sharing our table however included someone with a birthday and they asked us to share the birthday cake which was delivered to them with a song. Well, it seemed churlish not to join in and the cake was light and delicious!
Prices of meals vary with what combination of meats and seafood are ordered. It was not a cheap meal at $190 for 6 of us including a couple of rounds of drinks, but I would definitely recommend it for the experience of having food cooked to a high standard before your eyes with more than a touch of showmanship!
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