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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Sunday, June 12, 2005

Families to gather around teppanyaki grill

Families enjoy the tableside "show" that teppan chefs, including Peter Hai Tran, put on during dinner.

Photo by Randy T. Fujimori

Tanaka of Tokyo

Where: Waikiki Shopping Plaza

Call: 922-4702

Hours: Nightly from 5:30 p.m.

Parking: Fully validated in the Waikiki Shopping Plaza Garage

Other Locations:

West in the Renaissance Ilikai Waikiki Hotel, 1777 Ala Moana Blvd. (945-3443)

Parking: Valet or fully validated

East in King's Village (922-4233)

Parking: Fully validated self-parking in King's Village; additional spaces at the Miramar Hotel

Tugging on daddy's arm, Kasey Cross repeatedly asked his father Doug if they were going to get to eat teppan steak and chicken, two of his favorite items at Tanaka of Tokyo, the 9 year old said.

Meanwhile, younger brother Kerrington was more concerned about the crayons he needed so he could color and draw in his "Fun Book," an amenity that Tanaka of Tokyo provides all keiki.

"We're a fun place to dine," asserted Ray Liu, Tanaka of Tokyo's corporate general manager. "Families don't need a special holiday to eat here."

Nevertheless, Father's Day does provide a good excuse, Liu added.

And what dad could resist the Certified Black Angus striploin? Liu asked in a rhetorical tone.

"It's definitely our best seller," he said. "Our other cuts of steaks are just as good, but everyone loves the Black Angus."

This includes Kasey and Kerrington Cross, who couldn't wait until chef Peter Hai Tran fired up the teppan grill.

Nor could brother and sister Leo and Remi Screen, who were snacking on Goldfish crackers as they waited for their teppan chicken.

In addition to receiving their goodie bags containing crayons and coloring books, keiki are also given a choice from two menus, each priced at $10.50. Both include a shrimp appetizer, rice, vegetables and ice cream. A choice of steak or chicken is the featured entree.

"We train our staff to focus on the children and to make sure that they are well taken care of," said Richard Wong, general manager for the Tanaka of Tokyo Central location in the Waikiki Shopping Plaza.

"Parents always love it when we pay a lot of attention to their kids."

This allows mom and dad to enjoy the "show" as much as the food.

In addition to the Certified Black Angus striploin, guests can also opt for the rib-eye steak, which comes in two sizes: a seven-ounce slice ($28) and a nine-ounce portion ($31.50).

Other available steak cuts feature a tender 10-ounce filet ($29.75) and teriyaki-glazed sirloin ($22.50).

For seafood fans, options include sauteed shrimp ($19.25), fresh scallops ($20.75) and large lobster tail ($36.50).

All teppanyaki meals are accompanied by a grilled shrimp appetizer, miso soup, tossed salad, teppanyaki vegetables, rice, tsukemono, green tea and dessert.