Hiro's Yakko San
Name: Claire Hutin
Occupation: : Photo Editor
Lives In: Hollywood
Restaurant Pick: Hiro’s Yakko-San
Reviewed Hiro’s Yakko-San: March 12th, 2008
Always a great value. Due to well-priced, smaller portions, diners can try as much or as little as they see fit. There’s something for everyone here. You can take adventurous chef-types, and they’ll be amazed. Sit at the “sushi bar,” really just their line, where you can watch professional chefs work seamlessly and silently through hundreds of orders. They recently expanded, and it’s often more crowded than before, but they have a hostess so that helps and the service/quality of food never has suffered.
I’ve been in the restaurant when the fisherman came in with his pail on two separate occasions, so you know that’s a good sign! We had: Daikon Kimchee (awesome, not as spicy as the regular cabbage kind) crispy, whole smelt (so good, like sardines that you eat whole, bones and all, although they removed the heads) Crispy pork onion salad (one of the best things on the menu) tempura chrysanthemums (amazing, probably not too healthy though) cold tuna harumaki (cold spring roll-type item) ordered two of those! No sushi on the menu, as the chef owns several sushi places; only top notch sashimi, and we always get the red salmon sockeye. Top-notch, never needs any lemon or soy, so good as is.
This place is for people who are sick of the same old wannabe Japanese restaurants found everywhere in this country.
Name: Angie Arduz
Occupation: College Student
Lives In: Pembroke Pines
Restaurant Pick: Penon Limeno
Reviewed Hiro’s Yakko-San: March 14th, 2008
From the moment my boyfriend and I pulled up (my best friend and her boyfriend met up with us), I got the feeling that the food must be good since there was nowhere to park. (There was plenty of parking across the street where no businesses were open.) When we entered, we asked the hostess how long the wait would be, but she seemed overwhelmed, inexperienced and had difficulty communicating because her English was not very good. We waited outside on the single bench for an hour until a table for four cleared up. Rather than greeting us, the waiter skipped straight to the point by asking us for our drink order. The food was much better than expected and the “specials” menu offered a few out-of-the ordinary options, which was great for me because I get bored easily and I like to try new things. I tried the Mussels with curry sauce (Mussels were extremely tender. Sauce was very flavorful, but for my taste, a little less sweet would have been better), Grilled Yellowtail Cheek (special) (Excellent! I really enjoyed the simplicity of the dish because it didn't even need anything else except for a squeeze of lemon. The texture of the cheek was really soft and moist and the crispiness of the skin (which was not at all fishy or overpowering) was a wonderful contrast. I sucked the bone clean!...The best thing I tried at Hiro!), Banana tempura (Good. Batter was very plain, but that is how they are usually prepared I suppose), All in all, Hiro’s Yakko San served the best tasting Japanese food I have ever tried in S. FL., and I plan on trying it again when they are not so busy. Hopefully, the service will be better.
Name: Jorge Carabello
Occupation: Real Estate Investor
Lives In: El Portal
Restaurant Pick: Palme D’Or at the Biltmore
Reviewed Hiro’s Yakko-San: March 8th, 2008
When I drove up to the dark strip center, I was surprised at the number of cars overflowing the parking lot. The restaurant was packed with people waiting. But after a few short minutes, we were seated. From our seats, I could see two televisions on and hear the radio playing. There were six chefs behind the sushi bar all talking at once and more wait staff busily running around. I felt like I was in a train station diner. The first thing I noticed in the table settings were the cheap wooden chopsticks in a paper wrapper. Why don’t quality restaurants use the plastic ones that don’t leave a feel of wood fibers in your mouth with every bite you take? Or even have better quality chopsticks? Never having eaten in a Japanese restaurant that wasn’t a sushi bar, I did not recognize anything on the menu and felt immediately intimidated. However, the waitress was very patient and explained the dishes and even offered alternatives. She recommended a sake that was very good and arrived as a glass in a wooden bowl on a porcelain tray. The wooden bowl also had sake in it. Nice presentation. I expected my salad to arrive first, but it was the mushroom tempura that came. It was very good, but I felt bad eating while my wife awaited her soup. While she ate her soup, I waited and watched. Then her next two dishes came almost together while she was still on her soup. Were they trying to hurry us out of there and churn the tables? My seaweed salad was composed of three different types of seaweed that all tasted awful by themselves. The two sauces that came with it were full of flavor, a ponzu and a spicy one. This made the dish much better. The fish came and was covered with a thick concentrated soy based sauce that was too strong and overpowered the tuna. Tuna is a pretty strong fish by itself and could have been better with less. We skipped dessert, since we were both full. By the time we were done eating, we were ready to leave. I didn’t realize how stressed I was until I walked out the door and everything felt so quiet.
If you’re in the mood for Japanese tapas done in the most ethnic and pure style, go to Yakko San. Its crazy busy, lots of movement, loud and wild and some of the most authentic Japanese food, not sushi, that we have in Miami.
Location: 3881 NE 163rd Street, North Miami Beach, FL 33160
Type of Cuisine: Authentic Japanese Cuisine
Meals Served: Dinner
Accommodations for Children: Yes