In Seattle, Teriyaki places are everywhere. Kind of like sandwich places in Philly or barbeque joints in Texas. If you are in the mood for one, it should only take 5 minutes driving any direction to find one. So, in a lot of cases, they all tend to blend together. But, I will say, Toshi’s surprised me a little bit.
For lunch, I decided to just take off, drive for a little ways, and then look for a place to eat. After about 10 minutes, I found myself around Mill Creek Town Center and started looking around. I saw a sub and pizza place, and started to head that direction when I noticed Toshi’s. I made the snap decision that teriyaki sounded better than pizza and subs, so I headed in.
Toshi’s is just like so many teriyaki places. A few small tables inside, with a counter at the front and a nice friendly Japanese lady there to greet you. The menus are pretty consistent too (makes comparing them pretty easy actually). There were a couple other people in there, but it wasn’t packed, which you wouldn’t expect for 1 o’clock. After a quick glance at the menu, I just went with the special of the day; spicy chicken and chicken teriyaki. I also added on some gyoza because, well, gyoza is awesome. It only took about 10 minutes for the friendly host to bring me my meal. I grabbed some chopsticks and headed back to the office.
The first thing that was obvious is that Toshi’s doesn’t skimp on food. There were three different containers in the bag; one with the salad, one with the gyoza, and one with the teriyaki and rice. And the teriyaki wasn’t like two small lunch portions…it was two full portions. I started with the salad first (have to get my veggies). It was your pretty typical salad, nothing super special, a nice simple and sweet dressing. Then I took a bit of the gyoza. Again, it was good. A nice crisp on the outside, and a flavorful pork filling. If there was negative it was that the filling was a tad on the light side. Finally, I made my way to the chicken. This is where Toshi’s stepped it up a bit. The chicken was very well cooked; juicy and tasty. The teriyaki sauce was sweet and flavorful, and the spicy chicken was a little light on the spice until you got more into the sauce. Then it had a very nice kick that balanced out the slight sweetness. In fact, as I got into, I found myself enjoying the spicy chicken much more.
In the end, it is difficult for teriyaki places to really stand out from each other. And I’m not saying that Toshi’s was oh my gosh amazing. They did the chicken very well, but the other things were just average. But, given that the majority of the meal (which again there was a lot of) was better than average, Toshi’s definitely deserves a return trip. And for only $10, you can’t really go wrong!