Etaru

By: Dana Rozansky

Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to take one of those bucket list type trips to Japan. While I marveled at the cherry blossom trees and the gold shrines, the thing that truly won me over was the food (surprise, surprise). For ten days straight, I indulged in the freshest fish and juiciest steak I’ve ever had. Needless to say, I’ll never be able to look at Benihana the same way.

Upon returning home, I had a new snobbish attitude toward sushi and steak. “But HOW could it ever live up to Japan?! I lamented in true ‘first-world problems’ fashion.

Well friends, I recently dined at a brand new spot that lived up to my ridiculous standards. Introducing Etaru, a brand new contemporary Japanese robatayaki restaurant in Hallandale Beach. Yes, I said Hallandale and YES, it is worth the drive.

Etaru is brought to us by the same mastermind behind Zuma, which is the ultimate selling point in my opinion. But in case you need more convincing, allow me to elaborate.

Set right on the beach, you can sit outside and enjoy the breeze or you can opt for indoor seating to immerse yourself in all of the action. And by action, I mean a mega bar stocked with Japanese whiskeys to your left, and an expansive robata grill where the magic happens to your right.

After settling in with some cocktails, it was time to dig in. We opted for the Chef’s tasting menu, as it’s the best way to showcase the restaurant’s can’t-miss items. I’m all about that ‘Go big or go home’ mentality, after all.

At $95 a person, you will absolutely get your money’s worth for this tasting. We enjoyed course after course of fresh fish, meat, veggies and more. Plus, these courses weren’t some skimpy one-bite wonders. They were generous portions that could satisfy even the hungriest of patrons.

So let’s do a little show & tell, shall we? Feast your eyes on the Chef’s Tasting below.

Black kampachi sashimi, yuzu truffle dressing, mizuna and pickled vegetables

Black kampachi sashimi, yuzu truffle dressing, mizuna and pickled vegetables

sashimi 1 edited.jpg
sashimi 2 edited.jpg
Sashimi platter with 3 sashimi selection, yellowtail tartare, tuna tartare and oysters

Sashimi platter with 3 sashimi selection, yellowtail tartare, tuna tartare and oysters

Crispy tiger prawns with yuzu shichimi sauce

Crispy tiger prawns with yuzu shichimi sauce

maki edited.jpg
Wagyu beef with mushrooms and wasabi ponzu sauce

Wagyu beef with mushrooms and wasabi ponzu sauce

Asparagus with sweet soy sauce and sesame

Asparagus with sweet soy sauce and sesame

Sweet corn with wasabi lime butter and shichimi

Sweet corn with wasabi lime butter and shichimi

Spicy mixed sashimi salad with smoked tomato, ikura and piri piri sauce

Spicy mixed sashimi salad with smoked tomato, ikura and piri piri sauce

Scallops with yuzu mayo and seasoning

Scallops with yuzu mayo and seasoning

Dessert platter

Dessert platter

So if you’re considering a trip to Japan, you might just want to stay a bit closer to home and rack up some miles at Etaru instead.