Ever since the first time I went to a Japanese hibachi restaurant in California as a child, I always get a bit giddy when I walk into one.  There’s something about all of the sights, sounds and smells that hibachi brings out.  Who doesn’t enjoy some fire on a grill in front of you or sake from a squeeze bottle?  Last week I had the chance to check out a Hana Tokyo in Fairfield, which combines a nicely appointed sushi bar with a dining room of hibachi tables.

Upon walking into Hana Tokyo, I was greeted warmly by their staff and promptly had a chance to taste some of their appetizers at the bar. We sampled flavorful dumplings, mussels, baby octopus… and a pirate ship full of sushi!  Each of the appetizers was on target and gave us everything we expected and more.  The sushi was exquisitely presented and had the freshness and taste to back it up.  After all of this good food, it was time to move on to the main event.  With an ice cold Sapporo in hand, it was time to unleash my inner child at the hibachi table.

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Mussels appetizer

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Fried baby octopus

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Pirate ship filled with sushi “booty”

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Rainbow Roll

Our chef rolled up to our table (literally) with a calm and deliberate tone about it him.  You could tell that this was not his first hibachi rodeo.  Throughout the course of our meal, he moved with efficiency and attention to detail.  All of our various entrees were cooked just as they should have been.  This certainly can be a challenge when dealing with steak, chicken, shrimp, and salmon all at once!  In the midst of all of this precise cooking, he managed to entertain us with an onion volcano, fireballs, flying shrimp, and of course, long distance sake shots.  The food was well seasoned and had good flavor throughout the courses of vegetables, fried rice, noodles and entrees.

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Tasty sake, courtesy of our gracious host!

Once our chef left us full and entertained, the night was capped off with some light desserts.  We enjoyed a delicious sampling of traditional ice creams, including a very interesting green tea ice cream, and the classic Japanese fried ice cream.

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Fried Ice Cream

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Ice cream medley

 

Hana Tokyo

Address: 1275 Post Road
Fairfield, CT ‎06824

Phone: 203-256-0800

Website:  http://www.hanatokyo.com/

Price: $$-$$$

Do they take reservations?  No

Attire:  Casual

Vibe: Upbeat, bright hibachi

Outdoor Seating?  No

Hours: Sunday: 4:30pm-10:00pm
Monday-Thursday: 11:30am-2:30pm, 4:30pm-10:00pm
Friday: 11:30am-2:30pm, 4:30pm-11:00pm
Saturday: 12:30pm-2:30pm, 4:30pm-11:00pm

-Jeff