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Sake bombs are a definite option for some at a Japanese restaurant. There are both hot and cold sake options.
Photo Credit: guyonthego

Benihana - Plano

5840 Legacy Circle Plano, TX 75024
Generally lunch is 11:00am-2:30pm and dinner is 5:00pm-9:30pm, later on weekends
469-467-2242 2 hours
May 2014 All year
$50-99 Plano Texas
Website Food/Drinks Japanese Restaurants
First review
Benihana is a well known international chain of Japanese restaurants that features food prepared tableside and on a Hibachi grill. The cooks typically add some tricks and humor to make the meal preparation more entertaining. Typical hibachi dishes include steak, chicken and shrimp/seafood. There are a variety of sushi selections. Additional menu options include salads, soup, tofu and tempura. Benihana has a full bar and features many types of sake.

The chain was founded in New York City in 1964 by Hiroaki "Rocky" Aoki, a Japanese entrepreneur who also was a world champion wrestler. Aoki's concept was to combine Hibachi style cooking in a fun and entertaining environment. It started slowly but then took off, and over time additional restaurants were opened in more US states as well as foreign countries. The Plano location is about 5 years old. It's in the posh Shops at Legacy, which is replete with restaurants, bars and boutique clothing stores. The Benihana dining room has a slight crescent shape. It's more long than wide but can still accommodate about 12 hibachi grill tables as well as a narrow bar. The restaurant has an industrial chic style. There was no outdoor seating.

Sitting with a group of 8 people around a hibachi grill can mean limited elbow room. Visiting outside of peak dinner hours of 6:00-8:00 increases the odds of having fewer people at your table. There was not much time to enjoy the drinks before the meal preparation started. Drinks included a Strawberry Saketini martini and a frozen pineapple and coconut drink called Haiku Colada. Both were sweet, but the martini tasted too sweet. The Haiku was more distinctive and more flavorful. The alcohol in each drink was modest. As for the food, onion soup was slightly salty but still appetizing. A side salad was fresh, and the ginger dressing added a nice kick. Spicy hibachi chicken with onions and mushrooms was cooked well and reasonably tasty, but the portion was modest. While the cook got the food out quickly, he kind of went through the motions in making the dinner. He performed a few tricks but none very memorably. Also, he placed shrimp on the plate without even asking, which was not a good move for a customer that does not eat shrimp. While this chain restaurant has plenty of fans and was not hurting for business on a Thursday night, it was more sizzle than steak in some respects. The food was decent, but service miscues and a rushed dining experience diminished the joy.
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