*Updated 2/13/15: Yamato in Joplin has, unfortunately, closed since this blog post.
One of the most fun experiences this year has been trying out new restaurants as they open in the Joplin area. Many favorites have reopened this year, after being destroyed in the tornado. It has been a joy to welcome them back. And, there has been a great variety of restaurants to appear in Joplin for the first time. It has been wonderful to welcome these new comers.
Tonight, eight of us did a group first. I love that my family so readily tries new things along with me. We checked out the new-to-Joplin Yamato Hibachi Grill & Sushi Buffet, located at 510 S Range Line.
Any restaurant with the word “sushi” in the name appeals to me. I looked forward to seeing what Yamato had to offer. I picked up grandson Dayan from school and we hung out until time to gather Greg and Adriel and meet the others at the restaurant. Elissa, Linda, and my mom and step dad all arrived ahead of us and were seated at a table. Off we went, to check out the buffet.
It was an impressive buffet! A huge rectangular section occupied the middle of the restaurant, with plate after plate of hot dishes, containing seafood, pork, beef, chicken and a few surprises like frog legs. The food was kept warm over burners. For those preferring American food, there was also a great selection of favorites such as macaroni & cheese, fried chicken wings and barbeque chicken. Also present was a sushi and sashimi bar with an amazing selection of tasty bites, a soup and salad bar, a raw food section for the grill, and a fruit and dessert bar, with a chocolate fountain.
The fun thing about a buffet is also the difficulty….so many choices, only so much one can eat! We took turns surveying the selections and everyone exclaimed over each other’s heaped plates when we returned to the table. I focused on sushi. It was delicious! I have yet to try sashimi but will experience that delicacy sometime this year, for another first.
After the sushi, I ventured back out to look for dishes that are out of the ordinary for me. I didn’t make a big deal about it, because one of my daughters, who shall remain anonymous, is squeamish about certain meats, but I tried the grilled squid tonight and found it to be very tasty! I quietly enjoyed my meal. I was pleased to see Dayan try the salmon and a couple of other foods that were new to him.
As always, when any members of my family gather together to eat, the best part of the meal is the conversation and laughter that circles the table. I deeply love and appreciate my close knit family. September is a big birthday month, for us. I look forward to more opportunities to gather together and celebrate!