We arrived in Dublin, CA to dine at a Japanese restaurant named Amakara. Being a bedroom town far away from San Francisco, we assumed this was going to be the typical quasi-Japanese restaurant with typical American style fare serving pseudo-Japanese meals.
While the portions were large according to American dining expectations, we were pleasantly surprised with the first dish to arrive promptly after ordering: an edamame appetizer that was lightly oiled, the open flame grilled, and served piping hot with a sprinkling of salt. The portions was sufficient for 4 hungry diners while waiting for our entrées to arrive.
Next came the anko kimo (abbr. ankimo) appetizer. No disappointment for the monkfish liver that has been often compared to duck fois gras by connoisuers.
For the entrée I placed an order for the 'Trio' dinner, a meal comprised of anago (ocean eel), maguro sashimi, and ebi tempura topped over a huge bowl of seasoned (sushi) rice with a choice of miso soup or a fresh garden salad.
First, the anago. The eel was cooked to perfection. Soft, yet not mushy. Aromatic, but not overpowering.
Next, the maguro. I expected a sinewy cut, the typical none prime leftover cut served when not sitting at the sushi bar. Instead, the 7 slices were soft, tender, and a perfect accompaniment with a chopstick full of seasoned rice.
Finally, the ebi tempura. Just two pieces, but the battered shrimp was golden brown, the tempura batter crisp, and the flavor evidencing these were fried in clean, uncontaminated oil.
All the while, our table server was attentive, filling tea cups with regularity and without our having to request service.
This is a restaurant we must return to with so many other choices to sample. We recommend this restaurant.