Japanese BBQ- Grilled to your Liking

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Just last month, I got together with my colleagues and friends to try a restaurant that I had heard about in November. I have always been a fan of Korean and Japanese barbecue because of its individual pacing and the flavors in the marinades. Similar to the interaction of “hot potting,“ it is another great way of getting together with your friends and family to cook your own foods. This time, you cook marinated bite-sized pieces of meat and vegetables on gridirons for a couple of minutes and take them to your own plate for sauce dipping and eating.

This restaurant I’m referring to is the only Japanese barbecue restaurant in New York City that I’ve been to, and it’s worth sharing about because I loved the service. I can’t really compare the food though to any other!  Funny thing is, I had so much fun ordering from the menu that I didn’t take pictures of all the meats. I hope you’ll believe me when I say that the meat really is the best part of the barbecue! (highly recommend ribeye and kalbi!)

Gyu-Kaku Midtown is excellent, with different waiters tending to your needs and questions as often as you would like or not like them to be. My favorite part of the restaurant is their offer on Happy Hour, which extends even into lunch on weekends and can be very inexpensive compared to other restaurants in the area (or even just barbecue in general!). The $3 starter menu gets you a bowl of rice, soup, AND salad. Their cocktails add to the fun mix as well. Here are some of the dishes we shared and mostly enjoyed:

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Aahi tuna pokè atop seaweed and onions – probably one of my favorite tuna dishes I’ve had in a restaurant.

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Kimchi fries – not too spicy! A bit too saucy.

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Coco-Mo – Coco Lopez, pineapple juice, Shochu, Muddled Mint, Lime – goes down smoothly and sweetly!

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Ribeye steak – being grilled at this very moment 🙂 so fresh!

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Make your own s’mores – melt the marshmallow on top of the grill and then squeeze it between 2 graham crackers and a piece of chocolate.

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Green tea crème brûlée – crispy surface, creamy custard, not too much green tea flavoring though

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Caramelized grilled banana split

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It’s always fun looking for new places to eat but more importantly, great places to spend time and enjoy a cultural cuisine together. I’m constantly inspired by the variety of foods and creative fusions offered in the city. Got a good place in mind and inspires beyond just a simple meal to fill your stomach? Please do share! 🙂

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