TNT Diner

Samurai’s closes one Japanese steakhouse and opens another in Tacoma

A teppanyaki meal at Samurai’s Japanese Steakhouse typically includes fire, spatula theatrics and a charming chef who cooks a meal right before diners seated at the grill table.
A teppanyaki meal at Samurai’s Japanese Steakhouse typically includes fire, spatula theatrics and a charming chef who cooks a meal right before diners seated at the grill table. skidd@thenewstribune.com

In the same week, Samurai’s Japanese Steakhouse closed its Spanaway location for renovations and opened its new Tacoma location.

The new Tacoma location opened Thursday. It took over the former home of another Japanese teppanyaki restaurant, Sakura, at 3630 S. Cedar St.

The restaurant spent close to three years renovating the space after announcing it would expand to the Sakura space.

For now, it’s open for dinner, but a staff member said that lunch service was a future possibility.

Enter through double doors to a percolating water feature similar to that of the Spanaway location. Dual dining rooms flank to the left and right of the host’s station.

tables
Teppanyaki tables at the Tacoma Samurai’s. Sue Kidd skidd@thenewstribune.com

The left dining room is open at the moment with 10 teppanyaki tables. The opposite side will double capacity when it opens later. Reservations are strongly encouraged.

The decor resembles that of the Spanaway location. Polished concrete floors bounced the noise, but sharp sounds were softened some by the water features scattered throughout the dining area.

The location sports a better design for communal dining in large groups (tables seated about 18 diners each).

Teppanyaki tables ring the entire dining room with chefs on view at every station.

teppanyaki 3 spanaway
Fire is a fun component to a teppanyaki dinner at Samurai’s Japanese Steakhouse. Sue Kidd skidd@thenewstribune.com

For novices, teppanyaki is dinner with a show. Chefs cook the dinner, ranging from simple chicken teriyaki to more elaborate steak and seafood, atop the cooking stations with diners seated around the flat-top grill. Chefs are known for their showy fire tricks and spatula trickery.

The Samurai’s Tacoma menu duplicates that of the Spanaway location with dinners including rice, salad, soup, shrimp, vegetables, dessert and tea. Dinners range from simple chicken or vegetable dishes ($17.95) to sukiyaki steak ($24.95) or teppanyaki steak or shrimp ($26.95). Combination dinners include shrimp and chicken ($25.95), steak and shrimp ($27.95) and shrimp and calamari ($27.95). Higher-end options include filet mignon ($36.95) or lobster, steak and chicken ($44.95). Children’s meals for diners 12 and younger are $14.95 to $16.95.

Beer, sake and wine are served, as well as typical soft drinks. A la carte items also available to add to a meal.

Information about how long the Spanaway location will be closed for renovations was not immediately available.

SAPPORO JAPANESE STEAKHOUSE COMING SOON

Another teppanyaki restaurant should be opening in the next month or so where Jade Palace closed in University Place. Sapporo Japanese Steakhouse will have 12 teppanyaki tables. The restaurant will go beyond teppanyaki with a broad selection of appetizers, sushi and nigiri. The menu lists a wide selection of sake, as well as wine and beer.

Samurai’s Japanese Steakhouse

Where: 3630 S. Cedar St., Tacoma; 253-846-5557, bit.ly/2BYRMk6

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