I've have been residing in Savannah GA since 1990. Prior to that, my home was in Putnam County, NY just a 40 minute drive from NYC. Lived there for 35 years. I say this because it would be testament that I might have had some exposure to ethnic foods along the way, therefore a credible reviewer.
Right off the bat, the buffet itself is what I would consider an "Americanized" version of what we used to simply call a "Chinese" buffet. Why do I say this? There is freaking PIZZA, fried potatoes and other uninspiring items that I would never expect to see at such an otherwise incredible display of food. This is perfectly understandable...I think. After all, you wouldn't want to scare people off by serving only Asian food? Ugh...
The good news is that whoever is behind the Hibachi Grill has a keen concept of what will bring customers back. Pizza does not do it for me, nor does some of the other BS they put out simply to appease "the masses". What brought me back for the second time was the almost NYC metropolitan ambiance used in the decor. Who can resist the oversized entrance doors and the highly lacquered dark wood trimming with gold accents? It feels absolutely palatial upon entering! So many brilliant neon hues along with old style Asian details scintillate the senses. We are instantly mesmerized by an awesome indoor Water Rock Garden. I heard one customer say, "What excellent Feng Shui!". I would agree, although I think that term is better reserved for a Japanese restaurant. Then again, we are at a buffet that is truly a fusion of Japanese, Chinese and American fare. Feng Shui away I say!
Now, let's get down to the reason why we go to a place such as the Hibachi Grill Supreme Buffet in the first place. Food. We're hungry. My first visit was pretty much by chance. It was just a little past 11 am and I had no intention on pigging out at a buffet at that hour. The thing is, the moment I saw their billboard sign, a paper advertisement I'd seen the day before popped in my head. "Oh, this is that place!" I said to myself. Instantly my stomach began to yell at me. I drove through the parking lot a couple of times trying to talk myself out of it. Wasn't even sure if it was open, but I saw a few people making their way through the front door.
That was it. Walked in and was instantly seated. I fell instantly in love with the decor. Oh yeah, somebody has done their homework! Finally, Savannah Georgia has a buffet that might even impress folks visiting from the big cities! Yay!!! Ok, all said and done, you cannot eat ambiance; you just pay for it, but in the case of the Hibachi Grill, you don't have to pay too much! My absolute FAVORITE on their 250 item menu is their spicy Octopus Salad! Another Asian buffet restaurant in town started off with a similar octopus salad, but eventually removed it due to the fact that it was not popular enough. Go figure. That Octopus Salad is what kept me coming back, but my once a week visit was not enough to sustain it. Once the octopus was removed, they lost all thunder for me. I am truly hoping Hibachi Grill doesn't follow this pattern. My next favorite is their amazing Sushi bar, although don't expect any specialty items. Hey, for the lunch price of $6.99 you can stuff yourself silly!
Overall, the food is quite good in terms of texture and freshness, although for my tastes, I wish they would reduce their usage of salt and let the consumer add it if necessary. Like so many of us Americans, and many more around the world, we have been raised to like everything salty. If not salty, then sweet. No wonder this world is imperiled with disease. With these insatiable needs for sweetness and saltiness, there is little chance for the food itself to speak of its natural flavor. The chef's at Hibachi Grill have cooked everything to perfection....why poison the food with excessive salt or sugar? Answer is simple. American's crave salt, sweets and fats. It's a cultural demise, much as I am typing this review and not writing by hand. Who knows how to write in cursive anymore?
Bottom line: what I did not mention earlier is that on my second visit to Hibachi Grill, I arrived at approximately 1:30 pm and had to take a number, #92. They are that busy during lunch hours, understandably. My wait time was about 15-20 minutes. I must admit, sitting there for that long can suck the "Feng Shui" out of anything. You start seeing the place for the money maker that it is. The neon lights and splashing water garden lose their enchantment and the blank overworked looks on the staff become apparent.
Best advice: go during slow hours. Much more relaxed. Don't try to eat everything. See it as a work in progress. Next time I'll have...