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Save me from the horror that is Benihana. I need a PLAN B fellow hounds....stat.

Dear Chowhounders:

bessech you fellow hounds to aid me in my time of need. My cousin is visiting from Australia and has requested one of our family dinners to be at Benihana!! The last time I went to Benihana was because of a girl, she also really liked white zinfandel and Medieval Times. Hey, lust is blind.

This is a tradition I started with my sister and LA cousins years ago. One cousin and I used to do these extravagant Mexican meals, but soon others took turns and.......wel, it was about the family time, not necessarily the food. We then tried restaurants for a while, great, but, one cousin is a vegetarian, another never dines better than Hungry Man and Jackin the Box, another has a million sensorial issues, which just left the other cooking cousin and I.

So, my fast food eating, Hamburger Helper slingin', Boone's Farm drankin' cousin wants to go to Benihana.

Do you have a teppan grill rec for me that can sate his need for flash and frivolity, and let me also dine with dignity? Hey, I'll go to Benihana with a smile for my cousin, but.....hey, can't knock me for tryin.

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  1. Tears dropping for you SG

    1. I feel your pain. There is a Yamato in Encino that I've eaten at some years ago. It's been a very looonnng time since I've been to a Benihana, but my impression was that Yamato was clearly better.

      http://www.yamatorestaurants.com/rest...

      Also, recently opened in Encino is Hokkaido Seafood Buffet. This is an ayce place with a huge variety of buffet items but also includes a Benihana style teppan grill area. Would not really satisfy if your cousin wants to sit, eat and watch the cooking, however.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Bob Brooks

        Yeah, he wants the show for sure. He has no taste buds at all, deadened by years of salt, low fructose corn syrup, and preservative abuse from packaged foods. When I stayed with him hunting for a place to buy years ago he made margaritas with a bottle of San Matias Gran Reserva anjeo tequila I'd brought back from Tepatitlan, Jalisco. At the time you couldn't get it here and he used MARGARITA mix.

        1. re: streetgourmetla

          Oh oh oh!

          SO sorry about the mix travesty. OW.

          Good luck on finding a place!

        2. re: Bob Brooks

          we used to go to Yamato, moreso for sushi, but it's a much better alternative to Benihana, IMNSHO.

        3. You can all cook for yourselfs at Gyu-kaku.
          http://www.gyu-kaku.com/

          1. my deepest condolences .
            at least they serve alcohol there. . .

            2 Replies
            1. re: westsidegal

              Well, bottoms up, westsidegal. I will start drinking at home around 2pm that day.

              1. I have not eaten there yet but have gooten good reviews from those who have.

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                Mori Teppan Grill
                120 W Stocker St, Glendale, CA 91202

                1 Reply
                1. re: Hughlipton

                  Great, Anyone? Do they have a silly knives n spatulas show?