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The 5 Best Japanese Restaurants in Houston San Felipe Area

The 5 Best Japanese Restaurants in Houston: San Felipe Area

Our Criteria: 

Sushi: Only the freshest, highest-quality fish should be utilized in making sushi. Each piece of sushi we tried had been hand-picked with consideration given to both aesthetics and taste. 
Food Presentation: The art of minimalism in meal presentation is a skill that traditional Japanese restaurants have mastered. As a result, we thought about how most real meals are presented as appetizing, bite-sized amounts. 
Menu: Traditional Japanese restaurants typically offer a limited menu with a handful of the chef’s most popular dishes as opposed to a large variety of other options. 
Service Etiquette: To be polite when serving others is highly regarded in Japanese culture. In light of this, we reflected on how promptly, precisely, and courteously we were serviced.

1. Roka Akor Houston

Website: Roka Akor Houston 

Address: 2929 Weslayan St, Houston, TX 77027, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-622-1777

Hours: Monday: Closed

Sunday, Tuesday – Saturday:  4:30 – 10 PM 

Google Reviews Score4.6/5
Yelp Reviews Score4.5/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.2/5
Total Reviews4.5/5
Score Consistency4.5/5
Sushi4.4/5
Food Preparation4.4/5
Menu4.5/5
Service Etiquette4.5/5

Pros

  • Tasty prime rib tataki
  • Crunchy kimchi and wagyu dumplings
  • Creamy cheesecake
  • Well-seasoned brussel sprouts

Cons

  • Overcooked truffle rice

Roka Akor Houston is a sophisticated Japanese restaurant and bar that serves steak, seafood, and sushi in a modern atmosphere. They serve creative interpretations of traditional Japanese fare, with an emphasis on the use of robata grills. 

The restaurant had a pleasant and harmonious atmosphere due to the mellow selection of music, which did not require customers to yell over one another in order to talk. 

The bar was brightly lit and bustling with activity, but the dining room was darker and more private. We opted for a seat at the bar counter, and we liked how our waitress guided us through the menu and explained the different sashimi and sushi rolls. 

We started off with the prime beef tataki, which was well done and tasty. The side brussel sprouts weren’t bitter, and they were well-seasoned. 

Moreover, we also liked the kimchi and waggle beef dumplings to be crunchy on the outside and tasty on the inside. However, the truffle rice was overcooked, and the rice in the specialty rolls tasted as if it had been doused in vinegar. 

For dessert, we ordered green tea ice cream, and cheesecake. The green tea ice cream had a strong matcha aftertaste, and the cheesecake was creamy.

2. Ginza Japanese Restaurant

Website: Ginza Japanese Restaurant

Address: 5868 San Felipe St, Houston, TX 77057, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-785-0332

Hours: Monday to Saturday: 11:00 AM to 2PM 

Sunday: Closed

Google Reviews Score4.2/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score3.8/5
Total Reviews4/5
Score Consistency4/5
Sushi4/5
Food Preparation4/5
Menu4.4/5
Service Etiquette4/5

Pros

  • Karaoke bar
  • Fresh tuna poke bowl
  • Rich and flavorful curry 

Cons

  • Salty chicken karaage
  • Mushy shrimp tempura 

Ginza Japanese Restaurant is known in their community for its fresh sushi and cozy atmosphere. But on Friday nights, Ginza Japanese restaurant transforms into a karaoke bar where all dining customers can sing their hearts out until two in the morning.

At least, that’s what we’ve heard. When we went to Ginza Japanese restaurant, we noted that the staff was kind but slow to help us to a table.

We liked how we could choose between the sushi and the regular bar, which are well-supplied. We opted for a seat at the sushi bar as more space was available.

We started off with the edamame and wild mushrooms, which were well-seasoned. We then had a poke sushi roll. 

We liked how they used fresh tuna for their poke sushi roll and how it was lightly seasoned so as to not overpower the combined flavors of the seaweed and the vegetables inside the roll. We also ordered curry, chicken karaage, and shrimp tempura. 

While we thought the Japanese curry was thick, rich, and flavorful, the chicken karaage left little of an impression. The chicken karaage was salty, and the batter for the shrimp tempura was mushy to the point it fell apart in our hands.  

We did, however, enjoy their sake collection and their lychee martini. Both drinks were delicious and complemented the Japanese curry’s bold flavors. 

3. Yokushi Robata

Website: Yokushi Robata 

Address: 3837 Richmond Ave., Houston, TX 77027, United States

Contact Info: +1 832-933-6888

Hours: Sunday: 12:30 PM to 9 PM

Monday: Closed

Tuesday to Thursday: 11:30 AM to 9 PM

Friday: 11:30 AM to 9:30 PM

Saturday 12:30 PM to 9:30 PM

Google Reviews Score4.5/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.1/5
Total Reviews4/5
Score Consistency4/5
Sushi4/5
Food Preparation4.3/5
Menu4.2/5
Service Etiquette4.5/5

Pros

  • Traditional Japanese decor 
  • Friendly and professional staff
  • Melt-in-mouth okonomiyaki
  • Delicious grilled skewers

Cons

  • Salty gyozas
  • Fall-apart sushi

Yokushi Ramen is a restaurant with gloomy lighting that takes its design cues from Tokyo and serves Japanese charcoal-fired grilled chicken, ramen, and sake. 

The moment we entered Yokushi Ramen, the atmosphere whisked us away to Japan. The decor embodies the traditional Japanese restaurant decor, and they even play Japanese music in the background. 

In terms of temperature, the restaurant was somewhat chilly, but the meals we had came out steaming hot and very tasty. 

All of the staff who helped us demonstrated friendly and professional skills. We liked how they explained to us the different entrees on the menu as well as provided recommendations on what was best to try. 

As far as costs go, everything on the menu was reasonably priced. We started off with their gyozas which were crunchy and flavorful but a little salty.

While we did not like their sushi, as it fell apart easily upon being picked up with chopsticks, we did savor their spicy tonkotsu miso ramen. We liked how the ramen noodles were firm and did not soak up all of the broth. 

Furthermore, we also liked the okonomiyaki. Even though it took a little longer to cook than the other courses, we liked that our server kept us updated the whole time. 

The okonomiyaki was crisp on the outside, but the center was soft and melted in our mouths. But what we most liked was their grilled skewers. 

The chicken thighs and wings had a delicious flavor reminiscent of charcoal and were cooked at the ideal temperature and consistency. 

The beef tongue skewer was quite tasty too. By the way, each skewer is priced individually, so it’s cheap. 

We also noted the vast selection of sake available at the bar, including the sweet apple sake we tried.

4. Aka Sushi House

Address: 2390 W Alabama St, Houston, TX 77098, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-807-7875

Hours: Sunday – Thursday: 11:30 AM to 10:30 PM

Friday & Saturday: 11:30 AM to 11 PM

Google Reviews Score4.4/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.3/5
Total Reviews4/5
Score Consistency4/5
Sushi4.3/5
Food Preparation4.4/5
Menu4.5/5
Service Etiquette4.5/5

Pros

  • Flavorful masego sushi 
  • Spicy tonkotsu ramen 
  • Efficient service 

Cons

  • Old crumbly mochi 
  • Fatty pork chashu 

Aka Sushi House is known for its small plates of Japanese food and sushi, as well as its traditional and late happy hours. 

First of all, parking was difficult and challenging to find—we ended up parking on the street. But we liked how quick and efficient the service was at Aka Sushi House, as we were seated right away. 

Their menu had a lot of different things to choose from, and it was a little overwhelming. Regardless, we liked how patient our server was as she explained to us what was in the recommended chef’s choices. 

She also did not waste time in bringing out our drinks and appetizers. We started with shrimp tempura as an appetizer, but we didn’t like how the shrimp was hidden under layers of batter. 

We proceeded to try their Masago sushi and spicy tonkotsu. The Masego sushi roll was flavorful, and the seaweed was not bitter. 

As far as the spicy tonkotsu ramen goes, we liked the addition of bamboo shoots as it added an interesting flavor to the spicy broth. We didn’t like, though, how fatty the pork chashu was—there was hardly any meat. 

Furthermore, the mochi we had for dessert tasted old, and it was dry and crumbly

5. Teppay Japanese Restaurant

Address: 6516 Westheimer Rd A2, Houston, TX 77057, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-789-4506

Hours: Sunday: Closed

Monday – Saturday: 11:30 AM to 2 PM & 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM 

Google Reviews Score4.4/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.5/5
Total Reviews4.3/5
Score Consistency4.3/5
Sushi4/5
Food Preparation4.3/5
Menu4.4/5
Service Etiquette4.2/5

Pros

  • Fresh Unagi 
  • Chew calamari 
  • Japan-like atmosphere

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Burned spider roll
  • Salty beef bowl 

Teppay Japanese Restaurant is a quiet place with traditional Japanese decor and food, as well as a large sushi bar. Since it is a small shop, we suggest that you make a reservation. 

We liked how the entire restaurant is reminiscent of ancient Japan. But we didn’t like that the service at the check-in counter was slow as we waited for over an hour to be seated—yes, we had reservations. 

We started off with a side order of their chewy calamari and tofu. The tofu was not stiff and melted in our mouths. 

For our entrees, we first had the flavorful unagi bowl. The rice in the unagi had the right ratio of vinegar, and the eel was fresh. 

Additionally, we also got lobster sashimi, which came with a bowl of fresh miso soup. As the lobster sashimi was expensive, we liked how they also put lobster meat in their miso soup. 

On the other hand, the beef bowl was too salty, so we wouldn’t recommend it. Furthermore, their toro sushi was falling apart, and the crab in the spider roll was burned. 

As far as dessert goes, we had the sakura mochi and sasa dango, but they were too sweet for our tastes.

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