It's all fun and games… AND no one gets hurt. Auckland has an array of sensational dining options, but there’s nothing like the kick you get out of Japanese teppanyaki. The chefs—always donning their essential-yet-comically-tall hats—cook your meal right in front of you, for the freshest dining experience second to fishing for your own dinner. Your many years of eating are put to the test with the slightly nerve-wracking yet super satisfying mouth egg catch, and don’t you worry, we haven’t forgotten to give a special mention to the fiery onion volcano (how do they do it?).
Is it a show? Is it a meal? It’s teppanyaki—so technically, both. Flipping, tossing and juggling are all in the day’s work of these wonderful chefs. They constantly have us in awe between our mouthfuls of fried rice, yum yum prawns and tender slices of steak. So in honour of this insane combo of entertainment and food, we’ve compiled a list of the best teppanyaki in Auckland… go on, get ticking (or should we say egg-catching?).
An essential in the Auckland teppanyaki scene since 1989, the guys at Daikoku know exactly what they’re doing. Their menu is extensive—with four different steak options, a variety of seafood, and even combination meals if you’re feeling extra hungry. There’s even a stunner of a tofu steak option for all you vegos out there. The meals come with miso soup, salad, yum-yum prawns, vegetables and steamed rice (and ice cream during lunch time) so you best come in your stretchiest pants. With five locations all over Auckland, you won’t even have to make a trip for this one.
This is an extra special teppanyaki experience you can’t miss. Nestled just off the lobby of the Stamford Plaza, you’re in for a treat at Kabuki. You’ll have six different Teppanyaki menus to choose from, starring options like premium New Zealand eye fillet, Akaroa salmon and huge Atlantic scallops that are all accompanied with their famous flying fried rice (the best kind of fried rice if you ask us), vegetables, garden salad and miso soup. For vegetarian's there's the Zen set menu comprising veggie tempura. Yum. There’s also a dessert of fresh sliced fruits or green tea ice cream. Add to this the option of adding a sake pairing to bring out the flavours and you'll be drooling at the thought already. Start dropping some hints ASAP for your next date night.
Teppan Dining BOWZEpsom
The teppanyaki chefs are in action for lunch and dinner at Teppan Dining BOWZ. For dinner, whether you go for the Bowz deluxe or the 5 course set menu you'll start with 8—count 'em—8 types of appetizer. If you’re feeling like treating yourself, go for the latter ‘cause you’ve got options of 100 grams of melt-in-your-mouth A5 grade wagyu beef or the king of the sea, crayfish. They all come with premium seafood miso soup AND a dessert for an ultimate teppanyaki adventure.
You’ll be totally spoiled for choice with all of the premium options at Katsura—these guys take their sauce and meat match seriously. Go in with a game plan so you’re not totally overwhelmed with all the options including prime wagyu scotch fillet with wafu (Japanese style) sauce, colossal shrimp with yum yum sauce, crayfish tail with ponzu sauce and teriyaki tofu steak. That’s not all, your teppanyaki experience comes with zenzai (3 kinds of fresh appetisers) sashimi and sushi, salad, vegetables, egg fried rice, and an ice cream of your choice. Upgrade your ice cream choice to the ‘teppanyaki ice cream’… ice cream on a hot iron griddle, say what?
Don’t let the size of this cosy little restaurant fool you, because you’re about to go on a journey of exhilarating performances and equally exciting meals. Lunch sets are easy on the wallet, ‘cause some will get you change for a twenty—that doesn’t mean taste is compromised, though. There’s selections like perfectly cooked scotch fillet, salmon, chicken thigh and prawns with Heizo’s secret yum yum sauce. If you’re wanting to dine like a king, they even have a wagyu beef special menu, that includes 100 grams of tender marbled beef AND a second course of chicken thigh or fish fillet. Heizo is a family favourite because of their special kids’ menu, so the little ones don’t miss out on the teppanyaki experience nor do you have to give up some of yours—it comes with a smaller portion of their choice of main and are accompanied with a small rice, vegetables and a vanilla ice cream.
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Image Credit: Kabuki