My plan this morning involved posting a picture of the Geisha girl mug that housed my "dancing girl" cocktail last Friday night. Or, failing that, some sort of Buddha mug picture from someplace on the internet. Unfortunately, blogger doesn't seem to be accepting photos from me this morning. So this will be a remarkably un-artsy "artsy" post.
But it's still a restaurant review. As I mentioned last week, Friday night I had one of my favorite kinds of meals: the kind where the chef throws shrimp in your mouth. We went to Sakura Steakhouse in Hunt Valley to celebrate Alicia's birthday. As is usually the case, we spent the week leading up to dinner reading the menu and picking out our pre-dinner drinks. My "Dancing Girl" was probably the best one at the table because it was one of the few that wasn't cloyingly sweet. Really, the best part of the drinks were the mugs. I expected everyone's to arrive in a standard issue Buddha mug, but instead we each had our own special mug that corresponded to the drink. Mine was a Geisha girl with a fan. Jen's was cutest: a ninja. I think it's OK to call a ninja "cute" when it's carved out of cheap porcelain.
Dinner was fun - nothing out of the ordinary for a Japanese steakhouse, but very fun nonetheless. I love watching the chefs cook and I'm always impressed. I think it takes a very special personality to cook and be a showman all at the same time.
The food was good - again, nothing out of the ordinary for a Japanese steakhouse, but I love the sauces they provide (especially the gingery ones) and never say no to a dinner that includes a ginger salad, shrimp and filet mignon.
Nearly everyone in our group ordered pretty much the same thing (shrimp and red meat), though Jen and Bill added chicken (too much food). For his appetizer, Cooper deviated from the mushroomy norm to order chicken livers that tasted fine, but were a little crumbly in texture for my taste. (Also, the extremely sour lady sitting next to us totally wrinkled her nose at them and made a comment about it ruining her dinner. I'm pretty sure if you're going to be like that - and she was like that, even to her own family, throughout dinner - a Japanese steakhouse is not the right venue for you.)
Also, Mike's entree somehow involved lobster tail and that was really good. (Mike has also complained recently that he doesn't get enough M&G mentions. So there it is, Mike. Your lobster was good. Good order.)
So dinner was good, and it was fun. Our chef was, unsurprisingly, entertaining and he at least pretended to find us funny, too. The only negative was that they didn't even offer us dessert. We were out for Alicia's birthday and would've ordered some. Instead, we opted to relive our not-so-distant youth and went to Batemans for Miller Lite and a Cookie Monster. OK, two Cookie Monsters. We were celebrating.
So, verdict on Sakura: I'd go back, though it's definitely not the kind of meal you can have every week. It's fun, but also a lot.