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Kokkaku

As the seasons change, we inevitably turn our thoughts to tasty autumn dishes. Fatty mackerel, crisp tempura, mouthwatering steak and much much more are featured in this autumn roundup of some of our favorite restaurants.

Interviews and articles by Misa Murohashi, Noriko Hantsinger, Ai Isono, Harmony Kelly, Azusa Ueda and Sumiya Kurihara. Translation by Bruce Rutledge

Kokkaku

~Top-grade wagyu in Japanese fusion style~

Until October 31, tell the restaurant you saw this article in the Post, and you’ll get a Veggie Chips for free

It’s a unique name for a restaurant: Kokkaku means “skeleton” in Japanese. But it hints at the Japanese approach to sustainability, where nothing is wasted. While the beef cooks, the bones are used for soup stock. The umami of beef is delivered in a multitude of ways. From this summer, the person manning the kitchen is Chef Kazutoshi Nakasone. In Japan, he mastered Italian cuisine at five star hotels such as Mandarin Oriental Tokyo and New Otani. Just before moving to Seattle, he worked at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore as head chef for the hotel’s Japanese meat grill department. This fall at Kokkaku, Chef Nakasone created a new menu that uses his sense and technique to combine Italian and Japanese cuisine in a memorable array of meat dishes.

New York Meyer’s Ranch All Natural Premium Angus Steak 12 oz
Carefully selected premium Angus beef is known for the tenderness of its red meat. Chef Nakasone adds a special steak sauce that brings out the delicious beef taste

You can choose your steak based on your budget and preferences. “We prepare both Wagyu flown in from Japan and American raised kinds. Wagyu from Japan is famous for its high degree of marbling, adding an extraordinary depth of flavor. Enjoy its succulent fattiness. American raised Wagyu is less marbled, but many people like its tender meat with rich flavor,” says Kokkaku owner Yuta Sugimoto. He had already been running the popular Issian Japanese Stone Grill and Ramen Man in Wallingford when he opened Kokkaku last July. “This store is all about good meat, which I love,” he says. “I produced this restaurant in the image of a Japanese steakhouse, where people can enjoy high-grade steak in a casual atmosphere.”

Roast Beef Salad $10 / $8 during happy hour
A thick slice of roast beef served in Japanese tataki style. Your eyes are drawn to the vivid green of the mustard greens Genovese. The accompanying mizuna salad comes with a delicious homemade shallot dressing.

Popular menu items include an 8oz Zabuton Kobe American Wagyu Steak for $28, and a 12oz New York Meyer’s Ranch All Natural Premium Angus Steak for $25. The 4oz A5 Wagyu Steak from Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan ($60) is available only with a reservation two days in advance. All steak items on the menu come with grilled whole garlic and tomatoes and a homemade steak sauce. Besides beef, the menu includes popular items like Fried Half Chicken and Tonkatsu with Lan-Roc Pork Tenderloin for $18 each.

Japanese Bagna Cauda $8 / $6 during happy hour
Colorful seasonal vegetables shine on the plate. Try the innovative, thick miso dipping sauce

 

Worthy of special mention are the Japanese-Italian fusion appetizers. Wagyu Four Ways for $15 a guest is a dish that has A5 Wagyu sashimi and sushi, and two servings of American Wagyu tartare, one with quail egg and one with nori. The Foie Gras Brulee ($13) is a nice dish for luxuriating with a glass of wine. The Shrimp and Mushroom Shijo ($8) and Japanese Bagna Cauda ($8) are both just $6 during the daily happy hour from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.

Seared Wagyu Sushi $8
Sushi made with marbled Wagyu. The beef is seared at the table, with the hot juices dripping down. As soon as you put it in your mouth, you’ll be enveloped in happiness

“I plan to add to the menu little by little entrails, tongue and other parts of the cow you don’t see served in the US,” says Chef Nakasone. This is a must-visit for beef lovers looking to enjoy high-grade steaks.

Soy Creme with Azuki and Matcha $7
The newly hired Chef Nakasone is a detail-oriented chef who even takes care to make the bread and butter from scratch
The restaurant boasts a full bar. You can order happy hour menu at table seats, so families with children can enjoy. They have great deals available on the happy hour menu

 

Kokkaku
2208 N. 45th St., Seattle | (206) 588-1568 | www.kokkakuseattle.com

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The North American Post is a community newspaper that celebrates Japanese culture in the Greater Seattle area. Founded by 1st generation Japanese-Americans in 1902, the publication is one of the oldest minority-owned newspapers in the region. Today, with bilingual articles in English and Japanese, the publication connects readers with diverse cultural backgrounds to Seattle’s Japanese community. Our articles include local news, event calendars, restaurant reviews, Japanese cooking recipes, community interviews, and more.