Gokaku – Cupertino, CA

After a failed attempt at trying to get a table at Gyu-Kaku, the girls decided to stick with the original plan  of trying out Gokaku based on the great reviews.

We had a reservation for 7.30 but ended up just taking up the bar at 6.15 pm. By the time 7 rolled around, there was a huge line at the door till we left at 8.30. There were groups of people who waited well over 45 minutes for a table!Not a very big place, with maybe a dozen or so tables and a bar.

Menu is very extensive, with the a summary page for all their top items.

We ordered:

Zig Zag $9.95

Deep fried soft shell crab, tobiko, scallions rolled in soy wrap

Pretty good way to start the meal – the soy wrap was a nice change to the pungent seaweed. It was light and actually doesn’t hold the roll together very well but was nice. The deep fried soft shell crab was crunchy and warm with a creamy sweet mayo while the tobiko added a nice saltiness.

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Volcano $14.50

Spicy Tuna, Tempura Jalapeno topped with fresh salmon, avocado, crab mix, crunchy tempura flakes, scallion & chef’s original spicy sauce.

The dish scared the table the moment it was set down.. We ordered it based on the recommendation by the server and did not know what to expect – turns out to be a roll buried under tempura bits. It was fun and very tasty to eat but halfway through, we got quite tired of all the grease from the tempura bits.

The roll had tangy spicy tuna with a nice generous piece of sashimi on top. The rolls is then topped with generous clumps of crab mix in Japanese mayo. The whole dish topped off with a mountain of tempura bits and spicy sauce, sweet unagi like sauce & mayo.

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Kurobuta Shabu Shabu Salad $8.50

Chilled freshly cooked Berkshire sliced pork with organic salad

Thinly sliced tender pork that is served with a nice creamy sesame dressing that is sweet and salty. Pretty good dish to counteract the rest of the heavier dishes we ordered. It has a mix of lettuce, green peppers, tomatoes & radish.

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Gyutan Miso Zuke $13.95

Grilled miso marinated beef tongue with seasonal vegetables

Best dish of the night! The beef tongue was very tender and I appreciate that they were cut into generous cubes so the flavours were intense. The salty miso sauce was a pretty good with the lightly seasoned beef tongue, I could not make out the oil or the green sauce that was there as well.. The vegetables were greasy and quite unappealing.

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Aigamo Steak $13.95

Duck Steak w Mashed Potatoes

The duck itself was tender and lightly seasoned, which was fine since the mushrooms and sauce was salty and packful of flavours. The mash potatoes were gummy and not very good at all.

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2 orders Yaki Onigiri @ $3.25 each

I only took a picture of one but we ordered on tuna mayo onigiri & the other was the salmon onigiri.

I am not the biggest fan of crispy rice balls so would be hard for me to write about them. The rice was cooked well with a nice charcoal flavour and crisped exterior. I couldn’t really tell the difference between the tuna or the salmon since they were both all mushed up and seasoned so the flavours were pretty similar.

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Extras:
Complimentary Taro Chips & Sweet Dip

The chips were really crispy and seasoned with sea salt and served with a sweet fruit dip. The dip was a tad strange but the taro chips themself were good.

Complimentary Black Sesame Ice Cream

Not the best but pretty decent black sesame ice cream.

Complimentaty Edamame – Pretty standard.

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Total Damage: $90 (including tax & tip)

Personal Rating: 3 out of 5 (Good)

As much as I appreciated the free snacks to make up for how long the food took, it was not enough to turn the whole experience to a overly positive one. We got seated at about 6 pm and finally got out of there at 8.30 and all we ordered were the dishes above.

We got the Volcano & Zig Zag roll a good 15 minutes after ordering and then it was over 45 minutes before we had the salad. We were told that the beef tongue & duck takes at least 15 minutes but it was way over and hour before those dishes were served. We ended up cancelling one of our orders.

I didn’t try any dish that was super exciting although most of them were very well cooked and the prices were reasonable for the portion size. Servers were OK but started avoiding us when we started asking about our dishes (and we sat at the bar!). There was a constant line waiting for a table after 7.30.. I would probably give this place another shot on a slower night but maybe if we had reservations because any wait over 15 minutes for a table would not be worth it.

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GoKaku

10789 S Blaney Ave
Cupertino, CA 95014

(408) 973 0722

Gokaku on Urbanspoon

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