13741 Newport Ave
Tustin, CA 92780
3 more locations in Plano-TX, San Marcos-TX and Tempe-AZ
I visited Kobe Teppan and Sushi around 7:00 PM on a Friday night as a party of five. We were seated immediately. I'm a pretty big fan of teppanyaki restaurants because the food is usually pretty tasty and it's always fun to watch the chefs do their tricks while cooking in front of you.
We looked over the menu and tried to decide what to order. After a few minutes I decided to order my standard teppanyaki meal of steak and chicken with fried rice ($24.95 + $2.50 extra for the fried rice). I then noticed that the menu said it was $2.00 extra if you wanted them to use fresh garlic when they cooked your food. I have never seen this on a teppanyaki menu before. Most of the teppanyaki restaurants I have been to use garlic on everyone's food unless you specifically request "no garlic." I decided to just try my food the way it came instead of paying the extra $2.00 for garlic.
J ordered the NY steak ($22.95), R ordered the Hibachi Chicken ($17.95) and S ordered Teriyaki Beef ($20.95). S also ordered the Fuji Roll ($9.95). V decided she would just have sushi for dinner and ordered a Philly Roll ($7.95) and a Kiss of Fire Roll (Price Unknown).
A few minutes after we ordered, they brought everyone (except V since she only ordered sushi) a salad and some soup. The soup was an onion soup with mushrooms that was pretty plain, but pretty tasty. The salad had a standard gingery dressing on it. It was also pretty good.
The chef arrived, confirmed everyone's order and started cooking. He seemed to have pretty low energy. He started off cooking the fried rice. The fried rice was your basic recipe of carrots, celery, onion, chicken, rice, oil, butter and soy sauce. He added some salt, pepper and sesame seeds as well.
He then made the classic onion volcano with a little twist. He made the volcano and then made an inverted one on top of it. This unfortunately was the extent of his "flair" cooking. Watching the rest of his "show" was about as exciting as watching a short order cook working the grill at a diner. There were no tricks with the eggs for the fried rice, no twirling of knives, no strobe lights. It was basically just some guy cooking.
He finished up everyone's food and then realized that he had given the wrong meat to people. He apologized and said that we should just eat what was on our plate and he would go get more steak from the kitchen. He returned with a couple more steaks, quickly cooked them up and served them out. Our chef said that he had been doing this for 10+ years so he must have just been having an off night.
I started to eat my food and was really disappointed. It was extremely bland. Everyone else seemed to agree. I asked the waitress for some salt and pepper. I don't think I have ever had to do this at a teppanyaki restaurant before. Everything, including the fried rice, had no flavor. At this point I was thinking that maybe it would have been a good idea to pay the extra $2.00 so they would have used some garlic when they cooked my food. S said that since her food was covered in teriyaki sauce, it tasted ok. Everyone else though took turns using the salt and pepper shakers.
New York Steak and Hibachi Chicken
V's sushi arrived around the time the chef started cooking. The Philly roll contained salmon, cream cheese and avocado. She liked the Philly roll and said it tasted about the same as any other sushi place. Then she tried the Kiss of Fire roll. This roll had albacore and avocado on the inside and was topped with spicy tuna and green onions. She said that the albacore tuna inside was really fishy. She also got a fish bone and some fish scales in her mouth. She was not enjoying this at all. We informed the waiter of the problems with the roll and requested a spicy tuna roll ($7.95, not pictured) instead. The waiter apologized and took back the Kiss of Fire roll. He brought back a spicy tuna roll a few minutes later. V enjoyed this roll a lot more. S's Fuji roll was basically a California roll topped with fresh salmon. It was also covered with some kind of sauce that was similar to soy sauce. S liked this roll a lot. J tried it and liked it as well even though she doesn't usually like raw salmon.
Overall, everyone was really disappointed with the teppanyaki at this restaurant. It was just really bland. The sushi seemed to be decent though. The prices are high and the show wasn't any good. Most teppanyaki places can justify the high prices because you are getting an entertaining show with your meal. This place didn't really provide much of a show though so I think I will avoid this place in the future and just go to Koki's whenever I want sushi and teppanyaki.