Last night Laura and I went on a date night. We had bought a Groupon for $25 for $50 worth of food at Sakura in Farmingdale. Here is my comparison with Shiro’s of Japan:
– Shiro’s is located in Westbury, while Sakura is located in Farmingdale. Shiro’s is more convenient if we are going from our house, say on a weekend or day off. Sakura is more convenient if we are going after work. Sakura is located on Main Street (just south of Hempstead Tpke./Conklin Street/Rt. 24). Took us half hour to get there because of traffic on Rt. 110.
Push, just depends on when we go
RESTAURANT / ATMOSPHERE
– Parking: Sakura has two entrances, one in the front off Main Street and one in the back accompanied by a small parking lot of 10 spaces close to the door. There is also the big public/municipal parking lot. Shiro’s has a huge lot in the back and the one entrance up front off Old Country Road. Shiro’s also has about 5 spots closer to the door, so in essence the parking situation is virtually the same.
– The eating area at Shiro’s is a lot bigger than Sakura. Sakura only has 5 hibachi tables, compared to Shiro’s 13. Both seat 8 people. The hibachi grill at Sakura was seated lower than the eating surface. Sakura did have more regular table you could eat at. We got there at 6 on a Tuesday so there was no issue getting a hibachi table as there was only one other group at a hibachi table. Half way through our meal a few other groups of 2 and 4 came. It was too late for them to join our table so we had the whole table to ourselves. I would recommend making a reservation if going during prime dining time. Shiro’s always recommends a reservation, as they are the best and are always busy 🙂
+ 2 Shiro’s
– The service was just as good as Shiro’s. Service really depends on the wait staff and chef. Each has their own style so you can’t really judge based one experience. Everyone at Sakura is super friendly and polite. We must have heard “Thank you” at least 20 times. Shiro’s has impeccable service as well, except for that one guy who just seems cold.
– The Menu was pretty much the same, can’t really tell if one had more options or how the prices compared on other items, because Laura and I only order one thing, CHICKEN TERIYAKI. The hibachi chicken teriyaki comes with soup, salad, vegetables, 2 pcs. of shrimp and noodles. Shiro’s gives your 3 pcs. of shrimp appetizer. This didn’t bother me because I only eat one, Laura was miffed at this though.
– The drinks were reasonably priced. Laura stuck with water and I got an iced tea which was I believe $1.5. The glasses were about the same as Shiro’s.
– The Onion soup was eh. There were slices of mushroom in the soup, which I didn’t like. Shiro’s doesn’t have mushroom in their soup. Sakura’s soup was a little different tasting. Shiro’s soup is tolerable to me, Sakura’s isn’t.
+ 2 Shiro’s
– The salad is pretty much the same. Sakura’s ginger dressing was a little grainy for me and was not as impressive as Shiro’s either.
+ 1 Shiro’s
– The Chicken Teriyaki entree was very comparable to Shiro’s. Both start you off with grilled vegetables which include zucchini, onion and mushrooms. Sakura had broccoli and carrots, which is a plus for me since that’s all I eat, vegetable wise. + 1 Sakura. You also get the shrimp appetizer. Shiro’s gives you 3 shrimp, Sakura gives you 2. This didn’t bother me because I only eat one, Laura was miffed at this though. So we will say + 1 Shiro’s.
We always get the white rice so we can’t really comment on the fried rice. Again we always get the white rice so can’t give a + 1 to either and I believe the amount of rice is the same for both so push on the rice.
Sakura makes their chicken teriyaki with the teriyaki sauce mixed in with the chicken. This I do not approve of. I like to be the controller of my own chicken’s fate in the teriyaki bath. I also do not think we got enough chicken teriyaki sauce on the chicken. I am sure you can ask for more sauce, which I was going to do, but didn’t. Therefore the edge goes to Shiro’s, + 5 Shiro’s (yes, I gave it a + 5 because well, they give you a perfect amount of teriyaki sauce or use during dinner and to pour on after when you take the leftovers home). Shiro’s leftover also hear up much better as I said you get the sauce on the side so you can pour extra sauce on leftover before getting packaged up.
Both places provide noodles with the entree. Both noodles were comparable to me, Laura seemed to like Sakura’s better as then had more flavor. I’ll give Sakura a +1 for Laura, and Shiro’s a +2 for me 🙂
On the plus side neither of us got sick like at Benihana’s so that a huge plus for Sakura. We both determined we would both revisit Sakura if other’s would like to try, but we would prefer Shiro’s any day of the week.