by Steven Doyle
The bento box is said to date back to the fifth century and basically is a packed luncheon of fruit, meat or fish, rice and other tasty nuggets. These complete meals were often sent to work or school, and even sold at intermissions at the theater. In more recent times the bento has become a bit more elaborate and met with much skill for the housewife to not only to feed her children, but also a source of entertainment. Beautifully designed characters fashioned from pieces of sushi become anime characters, and tiny animals that encourage their brood to dine happily.
The bento box can be found in many Japanese restaurants today and offered as a quick meal fix for the hungry worker. Dallas has many restaurants serving these and we have a short list of a few favorites below. Please offer your favorites!
King Spa is one of the largest spas of its kind in the United States, and offers many forms of relaxation for the whole family with nine unique healing sauna rooms, acupressure massage for the whole body, a pool to relax in, and even a movie theater. In addition to all this relaxing, there is a food court offering many Korean dishes including this bulgogi beef bento.
Sushiyama offers an assortment of bentos including tonkatsu pork, chicken, sashimi and more. The boxes are on the regular menu offered all day.
We love Sushi Robata located in North Dallas. This little hidden gem is located in a strip center and has marvelous traditional sushi. Enjoy a variety of grilled fish, beef or chicken bentos with a host of vegetables, croquettes, tempuras and more to choose from. the lunch bento also comes with soup, salad and a few sushi rolls for good measure making this a very hearty lunch.
Steel just celebrated fifteen years and has geared up with a new chef and a kicked up menu that is refreshing. You will find a huge bento offering during lunch hours that includes many hot dishes such as their famously delicious sea bass, firecracker shrimp, Korean short ribs, and sushi options (and more).
Mr Sushi in Addison is another institution with longevity. Offering a full slate of bentos, you will find traditional tempuras, teriyakis and rolls. But for the larger appetite check out the Makunouchi Bento Deluxe that has sashimi, shrimp tempura, char broiled fish, rice, miso soup, Japanese pickles.
Deep Sushi is located in Deep Ellum and also has a selection of boxes including beef, chicken and salmon teriyaki.