Pasadena >Food & Dining > Japon Bistro
927 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA | Directions 9110634.145899 -118.131148
Tue-Thu 11:30am-2:30pm, 5pm-9:30pm
Fri 11:30am-2:30pm, 5pm-10:30pm
Sat 5pm-10:30pm, Sun 5pm-9:15pm
Neighborhoods: South Pasadena
Beware! A lot of these reviews are fake. – First of all, 22 of the 27 five star reviews are written by people who joined the day of the review and has ONLY written a review for Japan Bistro. Granted, there are still those 5 people who gave 5 stars and seem to have legit accounts, but come on! It's bordering on blatant and whoever is doing it should be ashamed! As far as my own experience, this restaurant was nothing special. The fish were fresh but whoever is buying must have taken some bad classes on choice of fish or is too trusting with his fishmonger. The chefs have average cutting skills and it really shows in the texture. Different fish requires different amount of time after cleaning to 'gather' flavor, which the chefs neglect. Customer service is great but can be slow at times. The place is clean and had nice lighting. Overall, this place is nice without all the hype. The hype will just over exaggerate the expectations people have and will ultimately let people down. Not a great way to win repeating customers to the establishment.
Delicious extra fresh fish artfully and attentively served – Ate at Japon Bistro April 2008 and had a fresh and delicious meal. We mostly selected the speciality items off the fresh menu, Kampachi, Spanish mackerel, premium California roll made with fresh crab, ankimo and more. The waiter was attentive and knowledgeable - kept our water and tea glasses fill and answered all questions. The ambiance of the restaurant was welcoming and friendly. We lingered for several hours and were not bothered. We met the owner when we were leaving who asked about our meal and seemed genuinely interested. My friend had a beer - and even with that the entire bill was only $68 - which was really a pleasant surprise. High value for the money and a lovely evening.
The restaurant front is very unassuming, as had been mentioned on other reviews - which was good to know ahead of time. Also only street parking, which was not a problem and free.
Only down fall was the bathrooms - which were just short of filthy. The bathrooms are in an alcove between Japon Bistro and another restaurant next door....and when I mentioned this to one of the restaurant staff she rolled her eyes and lamented how difficult it was to keep them clean. They looked like a truck stop and were not in keeping with the attention to detail of this restaurant.
Best Sushi in Pasadena – My husband and I LOVE Japon Bistro - it is our favorite Friday night treat! The sushi is not only incredibly fresh but it is delicious. You must have the SEA BREAM if you go, it is out of this world. All of the rolls are amazing - the target roll and lobster roll are a few favorites. Sometimes service can be a bit slow, so don't plan on rushing through your meal to make a movie or event. The wait staff is so friendly and attentive, too.
best and freshest sushi in LA – we tried this place on a whim, venturing away from our usual hollywood/ westside haunts. to say we were pleasantly surprised is a HUGE understatement. the fish is selected based on freshness; specials change regularly based on the best fish available. there is no overselling - everything is great, but the waiters are well-informed and make honest recommendations designed to satisfy the customer (not to run up a check). each time we've been there we've been awed (literally) by the fresh fish and the unique offerings. (have you ever had live sea urchin? haven't seen that at roku!). the sake is plentiful, the atmosphere is pleasant and the food is great. if you are taking an out of town guest to dinner where they'll see celebrities, this isn't it. if you want the best sushi you've had in eons, this is for you.
Best sushi in LA that isn't a 400 dollar dinner – We were blown away by this restaurant last night. The sushi was spectacular as was the service. Everything was top notch. The only place I've had sushi as good cost about 250 dollars a person. Our dinner last night was complete with 2 "overflowing" glasses of sake (which would be equivalent to 2 glasses EACH in most other places) and we ate a TON of sushi and left a 25% tip...and paid about 100 bucks! The waiter was knowledgable, reccomending things to me I would not have otherwise tried and LOVED. The staff was friendly. There was food on the menu that would've sufficed if people came in who were not sushi lovers. Overall the experience was very positive and we will be back. If I had any negative comment it would be that the restaurant atmosphere is so-so...but that's the only thing I could say that isn't a rave review and even that was not bad. In short, GO GO GO to Japon Bistro!!!
Great dining experience everytime! – My girlfriend and I have been frequent patrons of Japon Bistro for over 1 year now. The sushi is spectacular and is one of the major reasons why I commute from my home in Orange County to the Pasadena area. I have dined at sushi restaurants all across Southern California, from Los Angeles to San Diego, and I must say Japon Bistro is at the top of my list. While the sushi is incredibly fresh, the variety of dishes and fish they serve is what sets Japon Bistro apart from other sushi restaurants. In addition, the sake menu is the best I have experienced at any restaurant, sushi or otherwise. I like to think of myself as a "sake connoisseur," and I highly recommend others to experience the fabulous tastes their sake menu has to offer. Finally, the service at Japon Bistro is first class. The staff is always very welcoming and I feel they make every effort to ensure my dining experience is pleasurable.
Eric M. Willens
Great social atmosphere and food!!! – This place is awesome. I've been there a couple of times and the one thing that stands out is the friendly atmosphere and service. The sushi is always fresh and tasty. I recommend the Salmon Carpachio and if you're not sure what to eat just ask for a DNA roll. The service is customer friendly and very knowledgeable on the dishes they serve. It's a great experience and everyone should try it. They have a huge selection of sake. Call ahead of time to reserve a table because it's always busy.
Not good and way overpriced – Extremely overrated, less than average sushi that is overpriced for both the quality and portion size at $50 per person. I really do not understand how this restaurant got decent reviews, unless it was from friends and relatives. The yellowtail and salmon were grainy and tough. The hot appetizers flavorless. The seaweed soft and chewy. Service was o.k. The restaurant has decent ambience, but would never go back as both the quality and quantity are better at Gin Sushi, a dive restaurant 2 miles East.
Don't bother – After reading all the reviews on City Search, my husband and I decided to try it. We were very disappointed in the whole experience. The food was mediocre and over-priced. Service was okay--the chefs at the bar were much more attentive than the waiter I kept trying to flag down to get a glass of water.
WAAAY overpriced taro!!!!! – The taro sushi (fatty tuna) was $15.00 for each order ($7.50 each piece) & it was big and nasty! Katsuya in Studio City has a waayy better taro for $8.00 an order. Everything else was ok. Not a big sake drinker, so the place did not appeal to me.
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