Tasting Hour at Japonais

After an incredibly exhausting week of work I came home Friday to find Mr. T in bed, sick as a dog. I had been dreaming of a wonderful nap all day but those plans shattered once I saw how sick he really was. So instead I spent my Friday and Saturday cleaning up tissues, cooling fevers, running out to this store and that for whatever he needed at the moment whether it be medicine, juice or some sort of food item. By Saturday evening I was pretty tired of being the personal nurse and needed a break. Luckily right about 5:00 Mr. T went off for a nap and I seized the opportunity for a little fresh air and some food.

I knew I didn’t have too much time but I did want to relax a bit and enjoy myself. I happened to be walking by Japonais and noticed their Tasting Hour menu listed outside. I had been trying to decide whether I wanted sushi or some sort of meat- this menu had $7 appetizers of both- easy decision! I went inside and was the sole diner at the bar.

Japonais is absolutely beautiful inside with bright red walls and velvet seats. I came here for dinner once years ago when it was the new hot restaurant in town. I remember loving the sushi but feeling everything else was overpriced. This is the main reason I was so curious about the quality of the Tasting Hour treats (btw tasting hour is actually 3 hours 5:00-8:00).

My first appetizer was the sashimi of the day which was tuna and ebi. When this dish came out I have to admit I squirmed a little bit. I’ve eaten shrimp heads before and they weren’t awful but for some reason I just hate seeing them. Luckily I was able to move the sushi grass over and covered them up quite nicely!

As far as the sashimi went it was pretty good but I’ve had much better. The tuna was average- cut well and fresh. The ebi were super sweet, almost too sweet for me, four small guys were more than enough flavor that’s for sure.

My second appetizer was much better the Wagyu Skirt Steak Robata with pearl onion, shishto pepper and smoked spicy ketchup. The meat was excellent. It had a nice char on the edges and a beautiful moist red middle that was incredibly juicy . At first I didn’t understand the ketchup but it actually went really well. The smoky, spicy bite really gave a nice kick to the sweet marinade of the steak.

Obviously another draw to the Tasting Hour was the $4 cocktails. I was certainly in need of one of those so I ordered the Japonais Startini made of stoli citrus vodka, citronge, passion fruit juice and cranberry juice. After I finished the first one the friendly bartender came over and refilled me right away without me even asking. I finished the second and he did it again! I wonder if I could have kept going all night! Lol! After the third I got the check and left. It was very nice the bartender didn’t charge me for the extra drinks but you know what- I wasn’t affected by them at all! In fact I felt more sick than anything from all the fruit juice.

So apparently there is little to no alcohol in the “tasting hour” drinks at all. I mean three cocktails and I’m usually pretty looped. However it was a good deal and once my stomach calmed down from all the sugary juice I decided I would go back again but next time I’d stick to a wine.