Thursday, February 26, 2015

It's all about the beef at Japanese B.B.Q. Restaurant Yoshi

Nadine Kam photos
Crazy Rib Eye Yoshi Style is one of the highlights of Japanese B.B.Q. Restaurant Yoshi, Japan wagyu shot through with its streaks of monounsaturated (bad cholesterol-reducing) fat.

The new year is already shaping up to be like the last with the trending of the Japanese restaurant, with multiple new entries around town.

Restaurants out of Japan tend to be backed by quality, but the trend is toward more specialization and transparency in sourcing in response to equally growing sophistification of diners.

Non-flash video

With guidance from knowledgeable staffers formerly from Hiroshi, another lauded yakiniku house, the Japanese B.B.Q. Yoshi experience manages to be both delicious and educational. You’ll want to pay close attention to grasp differences between various cuts of ribeye, outside skirt steak ($16) and inside skirt steak ($14), knuckles ($38) and more. It all adds up to a carnivore’s paradise.

Typical of Japanese-style yakiniku, the meat portions that arrive at Yoshi are quite small, and cook down to little nothings that leave you wanting more. But my near iron-clad stomach from years of professional eating did not prepare me for this much richness. If you don’t normally eat rich food, you may not want to overindulge on your first visit.

The star of the menu is superb A5-grade Japan wagyu, Crazy Rib Eye Yoshi ($32), with its candy-stripe streaks of red meat and white fat. Connoisseurs consider A5 wagyu the best in the world, and Yoshi showcases it beautifully. Have some patience. Trying the other cuts before graduating to this beef will be enlightening. A visit here is not about stuffing your face, but ultimately about appreciation.
The restaurant is at 1316 Young St., open 5:30 to 11 p.m. daily except Wednesdays. Call (808) 784-0067.

If you’re a fan of cow tongue, nodotomo is the tenderest part closest to the throat.

A Grade ribeye yakisuki is grilled then slathered with a mixture of yamaimo and egg to increase the silkiness quotient.

Anchang nakaochi kalbi, left, and skirt steak.

Rib steak.

Flap meat yukke was delicious.

Yoshi’s chicken wings.

Yes you will find such things as shrimp—shown here after being sautĂ©ed in butter in this pot on the grill—pork and Jidori chicken on the menu, but very little salads or sides. Here, it’s all about meat.

Pork jowl was served with wasabi.

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