Sunday, January 11, 2015

Hatcho Japanese Cuisine - Santa Clara

3/5 stars

THE ATMOSPHERE: Japanese business men eat here. That should be reason enough. Actually, while I was there, this one suit was drinking the biggest bottle of sake I've ever seen. And he was all sorts of rosy in the cheeks. Quiet, unassuming restaurant with nice people and those fun-looking tables where you take off your shoes and sit on the floor.

THE FOOD: Huge menu! You can get sushi, udon, combination dinners - so many authentic dishes to choose from all in one place. The miso soup was probably one of the best I've ever had (and that's saying a lot) - it was light, not too salty, and flavorful. I ordered a 3-combo dinner and it was pricey ($16.95), but there was a good amount of food and the presentation was very pretty. My tempura came in a cute, wooden tray with a handle - sort of like a purse - and I was very pleased to find eggplant tempura in the mix! Not something you find in your everyday tempura. The dumplings were yummy (fresh, not frozen) and the rice was perfectly cooked. My beau had the spicy yellowtail roll and octopus and said that they both tasted fresh. He also ordered the noodles in claypot and would come back just to order it again. I tasted it and the noodles were good and chewy which means they were probably freshly made as well.

Came back a second time and this time, ordered the salmon terriyaki and it was DA BOMB! Salmon was fresh, cooked to perfection, terriyaki was light with a hint of sweetness, and the whole thing was served on these beautiful, large beef tomatoes.

THE CONS: Usually, a bento box or combination dinner would come with soup, salad, and rice, but at Hatcho, I had to order the salad separately. The dressing was too watery and disappointing. My terriyaki beef was sliced too thin and cooked too dry. The sauce was not your usual terriyaki - it was dark, unique, and tasty, but a little too salty.

IN A MOUTHFUL: Authentic, pleasant Japanese restaurant where you'll find many Japanese business men wining and dining. A bit pricey, but menu boasts a large variety of average to above average quality dishes.


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