Monday, June 30, 2008

Takara: Restaurant Review

Forget the popcorn. Nothing goes with movies like Japanese food. This year I was generously given a courtesy pass which allows me and a guest to attend as many movies as we like at the Sundance Kabuki movie theater in Japantown. As a result I end up eating meals in Japantown just about every time I go see a movie.

bargain bento
This Saturday I had a ridiculously cheap lunch in Japantown at Takara. This little restaurant tucked away behind the Hotel Kabuki and often packed with local Japanese folks is well worth seeking out. Their special lunch combo is tempura plus a choice of breaded pork cutlet (tonkatsu) white tuna sashimi, chicken or beef teriyaki or deep fried fish of the day. In what has to be one of the best bento box deals, I got white tuna sashimi, tempura, a California roll, salad, rice and miso soup for $6.95 and it was delicious. But next time I'm ordering the tonkatsu which I noticed several other patrons had ordered, it was dark golden brown, thin and crisp. The tempura is light and crunchy and includes all of my favorite items--shrimp, sweet potato, carrot, green bean and eggplant and thankfully no broccoli, zucchini or onion.

cheap chirashi
If you're willing to shell out a little more you can get a variety of rice bowls (donburi) for under $9 or a lavish chirashi for just over $11. Takara also has tons of "appetizers" which are really izakaya style dishes, such as grilled eggplant served with bonita flakes (yakinasu) braised pork belly (butakakuni) and deep fried marinated chicken (torikaraage). These dishes range from $3-10 each, order several and make a meal out them. And if you need a movie date, call me.

22 Peace Plaza Suite 202 (inside the plaza, next to the Kabuki Hotel)
San Francisco,CA
415. 921.2000

Mon - Sun 11:30 - 2:00
Mon - Sat 5:30 - 9:30 pm
Sun 5:30 - 9 pm