They say a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. I say that the journey to a great meal begins with the first plate. But why stop there? In fact, let’s do three plates. Thus begins my new journey to find the best local eateries in Beaverton in what I like to call: Three Plates.
My first foray in my gastronomy adventures led me to the new, “Izakayastyle” Shoten Japanese Dining. Shoten is located on 6165 SW Rigatta Ln in Beaverton across from the Fred Meyer off 158th. They are open from Mon-Sat from 11:30- 3:00 (lunch) and 5:00-10:00 (dinner).
I sat down with the co-owner, Gina Moon, who also runs the Crazy Sushi in Sherwood, to get an idea of what separates Shoten from other local Japanese restaurants. She explained that she wants Shoten to be a relaxed, tapas-style eatery that is conscious to the wallet while providing a fine-dining atmosphere. Head Chef, Song Park, a 25-year veteran, presented me with my three plates:
Plate 1: Hamachi Tartar
Presented in a martini glass, this minced delight of yellowtail, adorned with (real) gold flakes, salted plum and a roasted garlic chip, delivered a smooth, rich sweet and sour bite. The saltiness of the plum provides a tart finish that livens up all of your senses. This dish definitely delivers a tasty punch to your palate. Plate 1: Hamachi Tartar Presented in a martini glass, this minced delight of yellowtail, adorned with (real) gold flakes, salted plum and a roasted garlic chip, delivered a smooth, rich sweet and sour bite. The saltiness of the plum provides a tart finish that livens up all of your senses. This dish definitely delivers a tasty punch to your palate.
Plate 2: Sesame Surprise
7 one-bite offerings that leave you yearning for much more. These three bites stood out the most for me. The Tuna Ahi Poke offered a light, buttery, subtle saltiness that complimented the delicate flavor of the tuna. The salmon carpaccio has a creamy texture, provided by the salmon belly, followed with a zing from the peppercorns. The final bite was the oyster shooter. Flavored with a chili paste and scallions; it was a confluence of spicy, salty oceanic influence.
Plate 3: Gyudon
Gyudon, which literally translates to ‘beef bowl’ is just that. My first two plates were a combination of culinary and artistic craftsmanship. This dish does not need to be ‘prettied’ up. An uncomplicated dish of thinly sliced beef, edamame and grilled onions served with traditional white rice. It is tender and slightly sweet. Perfectly grilled, translucent onions give a caramelized addition to this dish. Simple and delicious. A wonderful completion in my journey at Shoten.
The Final Word
Aside from these wonderful offerings, Shoten also provides an Omakase Course Dinner, a 7-course offering. The term, Omakase, means “I’ll leave it up to you”. In other words, you allow the chef to prepare a high-end experience for you. Chef Park or Ki Moon, Executive chef and also co-owner of Shoten will not disappoint.
The traditional Japanese décor of paper lanterns combined with the light-hearted row of vinyl album covers show that Shoten works hard to deliver an environment that is both serious and relaxed. Serving high quality, fine dining at an affordable price, make Shoten your next place to dine. Itadakimasu or bon appetit!