Gyu-Kaku’s customers cook their own delicious food – The Sagamore
The Japanese word for “welcome” greets customers as they enter Gyu-Kaku, a Japanese barbecue restaurant located at 1002 Beacon Street. Gyu-Kaku is known for its unique dining experience where customers cook the food themselves. As a special occasion it definitely turned out to be a fun experience and we will be returning.
The decor of the restaurant caught our eye, with wooden slat banquettes crossing the room. In the center of each table was a circular grill for cooking food.
Despite a wide variety of dishes, the clearly labeled sections of the menu and aesthetically pleasing photos make it easy to find what you’re looking for. Although the restaurant advertises itself as a Japanese barbecue, it also offers a variety of plates from all over Asia.
After ordering, the waiters came back quickly, carrying lots of plates. First came the small plate items. The “Spicy Addicting Cucumber” ($5.95) turned out to be really addictive, with a sweet and spicy sauce and topped with chili flakes. Next is the napa kimchi ($5.50), which tasted amazing after cooking it on the grill.
The fried cheese wontons ($6.45) came next. Four wontons were laid out on a plate with a sweet chili sauce to go with them. Although they were a favorite of the group, we thought they were overpriced for the small portions they contained.
We also ordered a chicken katsu plate ($7.95). In addition to this plate, the waiter accidentally brought an extra plate of chicken, the Japanese chicken karaage ($0.00). Both chicken dishes were packed with flavor and crunch, and the accompanying sauces made them even better.
Three beef plates arrived at the table: yaki-shabu beef ($7.45), toro beef ($7.45) and kalbi chuck rib ($9.45). While the previous plates were too small for their prices, the prices and portions of the beef plates seemed more reasonable.
However, even with the many orders, the amount of food was disappointing for a party of four and we had to take small portions of each course.
Eating well is one thing, but we especially enjoyed cooking a meal yourself. We had to work together to use tongs to place the vegetables and beef on the grill, and the results were amazing.
For dessert, we ordered s’mores ($3.50 for 2) and mochi ($9.00 for 4). S’more making was a fun experience and the mochi flavor was interesting, but paying $16 for two small desserts each just wasn’t worth it.
The restaurant is easily accessible for those using the MBTA: the D and C lines have stops less than two blocks from the restaurant, Fenway and St. Mary’s. The accessibility of this restaurant is particularly appealing.
The food at Gyu-Kaku? Phenomenal. Portion sizes and prices? Not really. We absolutely recommend Gyu-Kaku to anyone looking for delicious food and a lively experience, but not for daily outings, as the total price was $104.40 for four including tax and tip. I also recommend skipping dessert unless you’re buying s’mores. But if you’re looking for a new experience or something to do with friends, this is the place.