Cafe Banzai – Restaurant Review
I was browsing Urbanspoon, and came across Cafe Banzai getting stellar reviews, so I figured I’d give it a go. I gotta say, the reviews were spot on!
The place is tiny, there are three or four tables, but my friend Sean and I were the only ones there. There is also a row of stools facing the window. The owners are a married couple – and were both very friendly. The man kept bowing to me every time I said something. The lady quickly brought us menus.
We decided to share an order of eggrolls, and I ordered the yakiniku beef – I asked what it was, and was told “marinated beef.”
Before our meal, we each received a bowl of miso soup, and a salad. I was asked if I wanted ranch or ginger dressing, and I chose ginger. Honestly, it wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great either – next time I will probably go with ranch. The soup was very good, but hey, it was just miso soup.
The eggrolls were great, although not as good as my wife’s. They had a surprising amount of pork in them – most places just load em up with veggies, and you get a tiny bit of meat, but not these – they were loaded with it! Delicious!
The meal was brought out on a large plate – it had noodles, rice, tons of meat, and a piece of gyoza. I can honestly say that it was all wonderful. The gyoza was fried, and just a tad crispy, exactly the way I like it (I much prefer it this way to the soft skinned gyoza you often find.) The noodles were just firm enough to have texture, and the sauce was wonderful. The rice was slightly sweet – I had ordered fried rice, not white. It was awesome. I’m not an expert on rice, but this almost seemed like they had made the fried rice out of sticky rice. I asked, and was told no, it was just rice. Communication breakdown, maybe, but nevertheless, it was awesome.
The meat was terrific, although some may call it a touch salty. I’m not sure what it was marinated in, but it was tender and flavorful, and I loved it! I couldn’t believe the entire meal was only $6.95 (sans the eggrolls). You can easily get out of here for under 10 bucks, even with a drink.
When we were done, I asked if they had anything for desserts. I was saddened when she told me “no”. They don’t have any dessert at Cafe Banzai, which is a bummer, because I’m sure it would be amazing.