One of the questions that come up when diners look at our menu selection is “What is tempura?”
When you see a tempura menu item at our Japanese restaurant in Charlotte or Japanese restaurant in Springfield, it means that it is food that has been dipped in a light batter and fried to a crispy texture. Tempura is synonymous with Japanese cooking. Stroll down certain streets in Japan and you’ll find vendors offering battered tempura snacks in paper cones. It is also commonly served in many Japanese restaurants.
Nakato brings the tempura tradition to our popular Japanese steakhouse restaurants. Western cuisine also has a tradition of fried foods like good old-fashioned fried chicken. Well, think of tempura in the same way. We whip up a light batter consisting of flour, egg and water and dip fresh foods into it such as shrimp, calamari and vegetables. The food is then deep fried until it has a light golden brown texture that is never greasy. When tempura is done right, it enhances the flavor of the main food item with a crisp, savory flavor. Dip the tempura food into a special sauce for added enjoyment.
At Nakato Japanese Steakhouse, tempura is served as an appetizer in our Charlotte sushi bar and restaurant . We offer our customers a choice of calamari, shrimp or vegetables done in the tempura style. It makes the perfect light snack to enjoy before the main course. We suggest trying it with wine, beer or saki from our beverage menu. Customers that have enough room for dessert may want to indulge in another Nakato favorite: Tempura fried banana topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Bananas go beautifully with the tempura batter.
Although, many people think that Japan invented tempura, it did not originate there. Portuguese missionaries brought this culinary cooking method to Japan in the mid-sixteenth century. Of course, once it arrived, the Japanese totally embraced it and incorporated tempura into the regular cuisine. Today, tempura is so popular in Japan that home cooks serve it as a common side dish. Tempura crumbs are often served over a dish to give it an extra bit of texture.
Now that you know a little bit more about tempura and how it is made, we encourage you, your family and friends to head on down to Nakato for lunch or dinner. Order one or more tempura appetizers to enjoy while you are at our sushi bar in Charlotte or our sushi bar in Springfield. We’re sure that once you take your first bite of this deliciously crisp treat, it will become one of your favorite foods.
Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Bar
Japanese cuisine is prized all around the world for the way it combines fresh seafood, meats, rice, noodles and vegetables to make dishes that look as good as they taste. Sometimes when east meets west the results can be pure magic. That is exactly what happened in 1945 with the opening of the first hibachi-style Japanese restaurant. In Japan, Japanese steakhouses or Hibachi grills are known as Teppan-Yaki. This form of cooking blends traditional Japanese and western foods while cooking them on a large flat grill.
Westerners in Japan flocked to these restaurants in droves. It was literally a culinary match made in heaven. Eventually, this hot food trend crossed the Pacific Ocean and made its way to American cities. The first Japanese steakhouses began popping up in the 1960s. Ever since that time, people that want an extraordinary dining experience have discovered they can easily find it at places like Nakato Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar located in Charlotte, North Carolina and Springfield, Missouri.
What makes the Japanese steakhouse an exciting fine dining experience?
Well, the first thing you will notice is that your dining table has a large grill in the center. Unlike most restaurants, your food is not prepared in a separate kitchen. Instead, the chef comes right to your table and prepares the meal in front of you and your fellow diners. The Japanese steakhouse chef is a highly skilled culinary entertainer. You will be amazed at the things he can do with two large metal spatulas.
The cooking show often begins when the chef does some brief drumming on the grill. Listening to the metallic clanging has an amusing musical quality. Depending on what you have ordered, the chef will begin selecting various ingredients and placing them on the grill. This starts the official cooking process. Hibachi chefs are famous for their slight of hand tricks of the trade. To their credit, these cooking stars seem unfazed by the many eyes watching their every move. Most busy cooks would quickly crack under this intense scrutiny, but the talented chefs at Nakato Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar simply relax and do their thing.
Order a dish that has eggs as a main ingredient and you will witness chefs do their amazing egg tossing maneuvers. Just like a juggler with a ball, the hibachi chef makes the egg spin. Next, he uses his handy spatula to flip the egg high into the air. It lands right back onto the spatula with gentle grace, without breaking. The egg is only broken when the chef is ready to crack the shell with precision. A chef may decide to make an impromptu drawing on the grill by drizzling the egg white. Turning rings of fresh onion into a sizzling volcano is another popular trick.
When not doing tricks the chefs display lots of fast skill in cutting, chopping and plating each meal. There are no mystery ingredients since you get to see everything that goes on your plate.
The wonderful chefs at Nakatos Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar love entertaining guests with mesmerizing cooking skills. All of the meals are prepared fresh to order with great style and a dash of fun.