Saturday, August 25

Food: Benihana Click for more info

Benihana offers novelty Japanese hotplate cuisine to eight or so people sat around a hot plate (if you're a fan of Friends then you know what I'm talking about).

I say novelty, because part of the fun is having a private cook prepare the food in front you. Unfortunately this brings with it a risk; although all the food is prepared to an equally high standard by all of the chefs, it seems that there's no guarantee of getting one who is entertaining.

Due to its size, our party was split into two, and as luck would have it, my half got the not-so-exciting chef - he actually advised me to start my food with Bismillah which, although appreciated, was a long way from the flames, culinary stunts and jokes the other party were being treated to).

The food was okay enough; typical Japanese fish and accompanying sauces. Drinks were nice too, with a good range of non-alcoholic "mocktails" available for us to buy. Service was adequate too, although I couldn't help but feel rushed to leave (although we were late so this may have been equally our own fault).

At £22.50 per head (including one drink), Benihana was good enough value - provided you get a good show while eating too. The fact that this is a bonus rather than certainty should be considered before trying out this place.