Very authentic Japanese food and this place is small but adorable. I love their pork but the tonkatsu sauce and the slaw are too salty. It’s also n the high end. That being said, I would still love to try their other food!
May 11, 2019
Truly a unique and amazing dining experience! Allow for plenty of time to appreciate the pacing of tempura dishes. We loved sitting at the bar, and since it is a small space I would recommend making a reservation to accomplish that. Great for a special occasion, and to learn about a specialty cuisine. Will look forward to coming again!
Apr 10, 2019
One of the best meals we've had in a long time. The food was amazing, each course was perfect. The Tempura scallops are to die for (and our waiter graciously hooked us up with a 2nd round of them since we loved them so much!). The service was exceptional. We'll definitely be returning for more!
Nov 12, 2018
Classy & innovative. A chic experience dining tempura as I've never experienced before. Great flavors and presentation. Eat everything with your eyes, and some with your mouth, and enjoy! Staff was all great, too. You need reservations to sit at the bar! Next time, I'll try that!
Mar 14, 2019
Just be aware that this is "Omakase" Style food. This means the chef has 3 or so preset meals that you can choose from but ultimately, it is somewhat limited. But it is great food. Reservation Reccomended. The tempura is not seasoned and you are invited to add your own when they bring it to you. Deceptively more food than it appears to be
Jul 17, 2019
i love all of the Michael Lee restaurants. especially this once since my favorite food in the world is pork tonkatsu.
Sep 23, 2019
We chose the "basic set" for $29. Flavors were delicate to intense, all perfectly balanced. Different sauces provided variety in every bite. Tiny portions of many different items were surprisingly filling. Lovely presentation.
Sep 10, 2019
Beautifully prepared and well executed tempura! Tempura is lightly fried and not oily. The fish was so fresh and there were so many unexpected bites! Pro tip: sit at the bar!
Oct 17, 2019
Excellent meal with excellent service. One of the most unique and interesting dining experiences I've had in Durham. Come with an appetite!
Sep 10, 2019
WOW! Some of the best Japanese food I've had in the US and by far the best in NC. There's also a super sweet lunch with beautiful katsus! What a discovery this sweet little gem is for me.
Sep 3, 2019
This is a great spot if you’d like to have a food experience. As with M Sushi, everything is very fresh and delicious!
Oct 24, 2019
Cute little spot somewhat tucked away from the main road. The food was fantastic (I had the cheese katsu and now want nothing more than a food nap), the service was prompt, efficient, and friendly, and the a e s t h e t i c was simple and comfortable. Would definitely love to come back and try their dinner set sometime.
Sep 15, 2019
First off I would like to say that I would rate this 3.5 starts if I could, but given the choice between 3 or 4 stars, I couldn’t come up with enough reasons to rate it higher.
The food and ambiance is good, I liked the small intimate setting. They have tables and seating around the cooking station. As some have mentioned, there is a fry oil smell in the air, so I was glad to be at a table. I didn’t think the smell was anywhere near as bad as some people described however.
The wait staff was all very professional and attentive. They described the food and setting very well and I would rate them highly.
The food was good, but I didn’t think it was great. The tempura batter is very light and is not over whelming or heavy, which I liked. I had the basic set and it came with a salad with some carrots, cauliflower and greens with a ginger dressing. The salad and dressing were very good, but it needed something else to make it better. Another crunchy vegetable would have helped.
The white rice is just that. The excitement for the rice is a perfectly cooked egg on top. This seems to have been some type of deep fried egg and it is not a typical fried egg you may be thinking of. If you like eggs, this one was great.
The ginger ice cream was fantastic.
The tempura itself was hit or miss. Several pieces were not hot. They are all 1 or 2 bites each. There is a dipping sauce that I found underwhelming and salt available (and needed) to add for flavor. The sea bass, scallop and shrimp were all good. Some of the vegetables were better than others. Only the eggplant was hot. Everything else quite cool.
In general I found the tempura fine, but not special. Portions are quite small. We left filled, and the portion for us was OK. Others may be disappointed, especially in lieu of the price.
In general the meal was average. Some food cold or lukewarm. The prices are quite high for the experience and food. With a bottle of wine and tip we were at about $150; and we each had the lowest priced dinner.
There is not enough variety here to keep me coming back. I felt that for the price I could find much better dining options.
This seems to fall into that category of places that get some sort of cult following. Someone says it is great and like sheep the reviews follow. Bon Appetite recently mentioned them, which likely will drive that opinion even higher. I didn’t feel the meal lived up to the hype. It wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t as good as the reviews or price paid.
Jan 16, 2020
Excellent food and very friendly staff. I just wish the portions were a bit larger. That being said by the time I had finished the last course I left full and happy.
Feb 5, 2020
Great "experience" (& that's what this place is about), very fresh food. Reason 4 vs. 5.... Not sure how impressed I am with being handed one sliced vegetable at a time for $$$, even though I do appreciate fine dining & can as often as I'd like. My one $6 scallop had an iodine taste. Hate when my clothes reek of grease after dining.
Feb 12, 2020
Absolutely outstanding traditional menu in an intimate setting. Pricy and the service takes its time, but that's the point. Well worth the time and money.
Feb 7, 2020
Amazing, 5.0! Really enjoyed our dinning experience at the bar. Great service and food!
Mar 7, 2020
Expecting anything less than excellence and delightful surprise from the M restaurant group would bee foolish. Each bite was flavorful and surprising. The presentation and service were just wonderful, as always. Highly recommended!
Would have been fun to sit at the bar to watch some of the tempura being battered and fried.
Mar 14, 2020
This place is absolutely five star. I was with a group of four we sat at a beautiful wood table as each part of the meal was brought to us with an explanation for each few items. It was fantastic. I love this place and would totally go again. Very indie and hip. Very Durham.