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Diners' Choice: Japanese restaurants in San Diego

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OpenTable
Updated April 05, 2024

Looking for restaurants with the best overall Japanese cuisine in San Diego? You’re in the right place. Each month OpenTable analyses more than 400,000 new diner reviews. We sort the results by category to help you discover new favourites. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!


A photo of Harmony Cuisine 2B1 restaurant
4.9
4.9 (215)
$50 and over
Japanese
Kearny Mesa
About the restaurant
OpenTable Diners' Choice 2022 and 2023!
Come dine in our modern and relaxing atmosphere, where we serve traditional sushi and unique fusion dishes created by our chef, Mickey Ninomiya who developed and sharpened his skills at various restaurants including Sushi Ota over 12 years with his passion and dedication under Master Chef Mr. Ota till just recently. With Chef Mickey, we have created new dishes and serve traditional dishes for our guests.
Enjoy particularly selected sakes, wines, and unique cocktails that pair exquisitely with our fine dishes.
In addition to traditional sushi, unique Omakase and hot and cold Japanese appetizers, our menu includes pastas, homemade desserts, and other regional fusion dishes to cater to a wide range of guests.
We are also proud to offer premium A5 Miyazaki Wagyu dishes.
Please let us serve you our traditional and creative dishes so that you can enjoy "To Become One (2B1)" with us in Harmony!

Top review
SusanSvip
Dined 2 days ago
Oh my gosh… hands down the best nigiri. Chef Mickey and chef Taka are the best around Melt in your mouth goodness over there
A photo of Temaki Bar restaurant
4.7
4.7 (17)
$30 and under
Japanese
Encinitas
About the restaurant
Translating to “hand roll,” Temaki Bar celebrates the tradition that all perfect hand rolls should be eaten within seconds of the chef passing them across the counter — while the rice is still warm and the fish, fresh and chilled.

Delivery and in-person to-go orders are now available!

Temaki Bar does not take reservations. We encourage guests to put their name on the online waitlist up to an hour prior to their expected arrival. The online waitlist can be accessed via our website,
temakibarsushi.com, or on OpenTable. Parties larger than 4 guests cannot be guaranteed to be seated together.

EAT HERE || LIVE FOREVER

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on Mar 22, 2024
Awesome. Mia is the best server. King crab hand roll is the 10/10.
A photo of Shimbashi Izakaya restaurant
4.7
4.7 (929)
$31 to $50
Japanese
Del Mar
About the restaurant
Shimbashi's theme is based on the Izakaya, a Japanese tapas restaurant. We offer a multi-faceted menu that can be used as a pairing with sake for the light eater or sophisticated dinner entrées served in the Japanese tradition. Our menu changes with the season making each dining experience a new adventure.
Top review
GJ949vip
Dined 4 days ago
Great atmosphere, sushi and service. Couldn’t ask for more. Definitely will come back. Thank you.
A photo of Nobu San Diego restaurant
4.6
4.6 (3582)
$50 and over
Japanese
Downtown / Gaslamp
About the restaurant
World renowned for its award winning "New Style" Japanese cuisine, Nobu continues to offer savvy diners across the globe a culinary adventure. Our San Diego location is yet another canvas for Chef Nobu Matsuhisa to display his legendary dishes, such as the Black Cod Miso and Yellowtail Sashimi with Jalapeno. The restaurant which is nestled in the perennially hip and centrally located Hard Rock Hotel also features unique creations by Executive Chef David Meade who has honed his skill at Nobu locations in Miami and New York. Nobu San Diego delivers equally on food, impeccable service and ambiance that is sophisticated yet lively.
Top review
CariWvip
Dined 4 days ago
great consistent food...super loud...went before the sting | billy joel concert. it is expensive.
A photo of Gyu-Kaku - Downtown San Diego restaurant
4.6
4.6 (241)
$31 to $50
Japanese
Downtown / Gaslamp
About the restaurant
Founded in Tokyo in 1996, Gyu-Kaku has become the world’s #1 Japanese BBQ brand! Thanks to our devoted fans we have reached over 700 locations worldwide. Each day, hundreds of thousands of people gather around the table-top smokeless grill, a centerpiece of our dining concept, enjoying selections of premium meats, just off the grill, and other freshly prepared foods from our kitchens, inspiring laughter, conversation, and a magical dining experience.

Our authentic yakiniku (grilled barbeque) dining experience crowns you the chef. Share a variety of delicious appetizers and premium cooked meats over a flaming grill, paired with Japanese sake, frosty cold beers, or other alcoholic and non-alcoholic options of your choice. We're the perfect spot to enjoy time with friends and family, organize an office party, or to spend quality time with your significant other!

Before you go, don't forget to taste our best-seller Harami Skirt Steak or Prime Kalbi Short Rib among other must-try dishes!

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on Apr 7, 2024
Cami provided us with excellent service and explanations of our choices since it was our first time there. Food was great. Overall, I would recommend and plan on a second trip.
A photo of Mo-Mo-Paradise - Mira Mesa restaurant
4.6
4.6 (203)
$30 and under
Japanese
Mira Mesa
About the restaurant
Since its first restaurant opening in 1993, Mo-Mo-Paradise has expanded its presence to over 20 cities throughout Asia with plans to expand further throughout the rest of the world. Currently, Mo-Mo-Paradise can be found in Japan, Taiwan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, USA, Cambodia, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

Our Mo-Mo-Paradise brand focuses on traditional Japanese “hot pot” with a modern twist. We offer a wide variety of quality international and local meats and vegetables that is cooked shabu-shabu or sukiyaki style at your table. Throughout Asia, Mo-Mo-Paradise has established a strong fan base due to our focus on fresh and varietal selections that are unmatched compared to other establishments. Our goal is to bring you the same quality and selections currently not offered at western shabu-shabu restaurants.

Top review
PJMWifey
Dined 4 days ago
We celebrated a friends bday and most of our first time. It was great and will definitely come back. Chris was a great waiter!!
A photo of Lumi restaurant
4.5
4.5 (585)
$31 to $50
Japanese
Downtown / Gaslamp
About the restaurant
Featuring world-renowned celebrity chef Akira Back, Lumi is an energetic and upscale rooftop experience serving innovative Japanese fare and sushi accompanied by handcrafted libations in a vividly unique atmosphere.
Top review
DonnaGvip
Dined 5 days ago
Boy am I glad I didn't listen to the other reviewers. I don't know what was off the night you were there but Lumi is amazing! The food is terrific, the service is impeccable and the vibe is just off the charts! We came for a late dinner after our flight was delayed, and they couldn't have been more welcoming! Pearl and Lucas were stand outs. The atmosphere was fun and chill, great music. We sat outside and we were more than warm with the heaters going (we took out jackets off!!!) We ordered the special Box which had 9 types of Sashimi, beautifully presented in dry ice, a bit of flair and absolutely delicious. It's a fair price too, $50 per person, and each person got 9 pieces. It was one of the yummiest sashimi plates I've ever eaten! The sashimi pizza is definitely a not miss and we had the Surf and turf roll which was the perfect ending to the meal. We were satisfied but not over stuffed. (The menu looked so good that we could have easily ordered a bunch of other things!!!) The cocktails were beautiful and delicious, you MUST try the slushie!!!! We didn't have dessert, they have 2 options but honestly the roll was a good instead of dessert compromise. I would come back here in a heartbeat and I hope that my review jumps the ranking up to where it deserves to be! I only wish we had places like this in the SF Bay area!!!
A photo of Craft Bar Kamon restaurant
4.8
4.8 (116)
$31 to $50
Japanese
Downtown / Gaslamp
About the restaurant
"Taisho Roman craft cocktail bar in the heart of East Village San Diego that reflects the period in Japan when traditionalism and modernism first converged. We are committed to offer the unique and best craft cocktails!
**To make a reservation for a party of 6 or more, please contact us through email at info@barkamon.com
Please refrain from booking multiple tables as we most likely won't be able to accommodate to seat together.

**Please be aware that table or bar seating selection is just a request and it is not a confirmation. We will try our best to accommodate but due to limited seating availability, you may be seated to a different section from what you have requested at the reservation.

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on Apr 7, 2024
Shout out to our waiter Amadeus, he was very kind and cared for my friends. Ambience was nice, was pleasant surprised I got a glass of one of my favorite whiskey which is hard to come by.
A photo of Benihana - Carlsbad, CA restaurant
4.3
4.3 (3549)
$30 and under
Japanese
Carlsbad
About the restaurant
Welcome to Benihana, a dining experience unlike any other! Our guests are seated at communal tables in groups, where your personal chef will perform the ancient art of Teppanyaki. Watch as we slice and dice, preparing a meal that will dazzle your eyes as well taste buds, whether you choose mouth-watering steak, tender chicken or succulent seafood. You can also enjoy sushi prepared by a talented sushi chef and indulge in a specialty cocktail.
Top review
VeronicaR
Dined on Apr 8, 2024
Service and food was outstanding. Our Chef and server were very attentive. food was cooked to perfection.
A photo of Benihana - San Diego, CA restaurant
4.0
4 (6927)
$30 and under
Japanese
Mission Valley
About the restaurant
Welcome to Benihana, a dining experience unlike any other! Our guests are seated at communal tables in groups, where your personal chef will perform the ancient art of Teppanyaki. Watch as we slice and dice, preparing a meal that will dazzle your eyes as well taste buds, whether you choose mouth-watering steak, tender chicken or succulent seafood. You can also enjoy sushi prepared by a talented sushi chef and indulge in a specialty cocktail.
Top review
TravisL
Dined 6 days ago
Server was great, chef was super fun, and the food was awesome. I haven’t been in a while, but decided to bring our small kids. They had a blast. The room we were in was cold and had a weird smell, but as soon as the cooking started all was well. Great experience overall. We will be back!
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