Food & Drink

Review: Sapporo Teppanyaki @ Castlefield, Manchester

Finding a place to eat out in Manchester that serves delicious food on plates without the side dish of pretention and provides fun, easy-going entertainment in a modern setting without the exposed brickwork is not an easy feat.

But Japanese restaurant Sapporo Teppanyaki on Liverpool Road, just off Deansgate, is the place to escape the try hard, over-priced, gourmet burgers bigger than your face served on tree trunks or the tiny fine dining portions served on roofing tiles or in teacups.

With one of the most extensive menus I’ve seen in a long time – from sushi, soups, salads and starters to meat, poultry, fish, seafood, veggies and fried rice cooked on the hot plate in front of you – you really can indulge to your heart’s content.

Everything is so fresh, and the fish used for the sushi and sashimi is unbelievably tender.

And because all the teppanyaki mains are grilled, unless you overeat as much as the MM team did last night, you actually feel like you’ve achieved the impossible of eating healthily without sacrificing any yumminess.

Also actually watching your food get prepped and cooked is always enjoyable.

But even more so at Sapporo where the chef puts on a bit of a show to keep you all entertained and laughing rather than salivating over the garlicy, soya saucy delights you can’t wait to have in your belly.

Every table gets the same spectacle from their individual chefs but it never feels false or forced, in fact, everyone just seems really happy to be there.

Maybe there’s something in the water, but I wouldn’t know because I was too busy sampling the wine… and the cocktails… and the beer – for research purposes, of course.

Following my heart and not my still aching head, the top drink in each category are the Nova Safra, a red wine from 2012, the Japanese Mojito – closely tied with the Tokyo Ice Tea – and the Asahi.

The same research also led my dinner party to chocolate spring rolls, Japanese cheesecake, banoffee and chocolate ice cream made specially for Sapporo and a fruit plate. I regret nothing.

I sometimes steer clear of desserts when the starters and mains have been so wonderful because there’s the risk of ruining it, but not here. Everything was divine, in particular the cheesecake but it’s a bit of a life favourite so I may be biased.

So at the risk of sounding even more sycophantic – praise where praise is due of course – if you want a tasty meal at a reasonable price with free entertainment and a non-hipster twist, head to Sapporo Teppanyaki. 

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