Teppan Dancing

Going east -- 15 miles or so -- for great Japanese food

A ginger-based sauce is provided in which to dip seafood selections, as is a moderately spicy mustard for the meat, and the whole performance is generally over in less than an hour. Kids' portions are available for 7-9 bucks, and the constant activity actually makes these kind of restaurants a good choice for family outings because there's always something visual going on to hold the young'uns' interest. (Speaking of holding the young'uns, one couple came in with a toddler, who was carried around by one of the waitresses throughout the course of the couple's meal. We guessed that this level of service isn't offered to just anybody, but it certainly deserved an "above and beyond" award.)

By offering everything from straightforward steaks, chicken and cooked seafood to brightly colored fish eggs wrapped in seaweed and topped with raw quail egg, Japanese Garden has pretty much something for everyone. And you're also likely to enjoy the show.

Lee Jong Wook shows off Japanese Garden's sushi, a spectacular surprise.
Jennifer Silverberg
Lee Jong Wook shows off Japanese Garden's sushi, a spectacular surprise.

JAPANESE GARDEN, 108 Regency Park (I-64 at Highway 50), O'Fallon, Ill., 618-632-8700 or 314-533-8700. Hours: 5-10 p.m. daily. Sushi, $3.75-$6; complete grilled meals, $10.95-$29.95.

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