One Saturday the hubby and I took ourselves out on a “proper” date, heading to the theater for a showing of the new Thor movie and following up with dinner out at Miyako. It was surprisingly quiet for a Saturday night, though we did arrive past the peak dinner hour. We were promptly seated in a booth across from a large fountain and we settled in.
Our server took our drink orders and delivered, oddly enough, one set of the menus. This worked out fine since the hubby has been on a major sushi kick lately and I was more interested in their dinner combinations, but struck me as a strange default.
Our drinks arrived and, as I waited for the hubby to select his sushi, I soaked up the light instrumental music. The volume was set perfectly…not so loud as to be difficult to talk over but loud enough to avoid catching intermittent snatches. The walls and carpeting were both red, with paper laterns hung from the ceiling adding a pop of color. A TV set near the fountain was playing sitcoms with closed captioning.
Once the hubby made up his mind, we placed our order. One chicken tempura for me and two sushi rolls–the crunchy California and the spicy tuna–for my husband. The menu was a little sparse on details so it was only because of previous dining experiences at Japanese restaurants that I was not surprised when miso soup and a salad with ginger dressing appeared.
However, I was a bit taken aback at how nearly instantaneous their arrival was. Facing down two bowls, I opted first for the soup.
Small tofu cubes and crunchy rings of green onion floated lazily in the salty broth. As I sipped the soup, I discovered small pieces of seaweed. Some of you will likely find this a welcome addition. As someone who can’t stand the flavor of seaweed, I found it rather grating.
The salad was uninspiring. The standard iceburg lettuce, shredded carrots, and a few lonely pieces of grated cabbage were topped with a grainy, chunkily pureed, flavorless ginger dressing. Knowing I had plenty of food coming, I skipped it after the initial taste test.
Our food came up quickly and I was delighted by the plating of my dish. My tempura came with a feathered friend! (See the close up at the top of the post.)
My chicken tempura was made with quality white meat and featured a flaky, crumbly breading. It was not overly greasy and it’s mild flavor enhanced by the accompanying thin sauce. (tentsuyu, I assume.) I wished the sauce had a stronger flavor though, the overall effect was rather washed out.
The vegetables portion of my tempura included fresh and flavorful zucchini, soft sweet potato, and the happy surprise of a crunchy, sweet white onion slice. I find broccoli rarely tempuras well and this one was no exception, it was overly soft with a strange dusty aftertaste. The carrot slice, which started delightfully sweet and bright finished with the same dusty flavor. The rice was a shorter grained sticky rice which held together nicely.
The hubby’s sushi was also beautifully plated, his sushi draped across a large leaf and undyed ginger giving a floral effect at the front of his plate. When I asked how his food was, his reply was “pretty good”, though he had had better elsewhere.
Miyako does ambiance well. From the just right music volume to the absolutely gorgeous plating, they know how to set the scene for a relaxing meal. Unfortunately, the food does not live up to that promise. It’s not bad food, and I suspect your opinion may vary depending on what you order. For my part, I wasn’t overly impressed. I would accompany someone if they wanted to go there, but it wouldn’t be my first choice.
Total for the meal: $22.84 (included 1 chicken tempura meal, 2 sushi rolls, and one soft drink)