Ambiance: Recently opened (2012), contemporary finer-dining eatery located along Sunabe Seawall in Miyagi, Chatan-cho.
Service: A small establishment which prides itself on fresh food perfectly cooked-to-order, which means the wait times can be, if busy, longer than what you may be accustomed to, but which is well worth the culinary adventure awaiting you when finally served. The friendliness and personal attentiveness of the staff is superb. The maximum group size accepted is six persons; reservations are highly encouraged for groups of 4 or more in order to ensure prompt service.
Food Quality: Above-Average to Excellent.
Features: Quaint eatery with conditioned indoor and shaded outdoor seating. Romantic atmosphere, but kid- and pet-friendly. An affable and engaging chat with Chef and Owner Taka-san is a highlight of any visit!
Cuisine: Japanese-fusion, with a weighty European (Italian) spin. The clearly American-influenced breakfast selections are hearty and filling, and they proudly proclaim they serve “Okinawa’s #1 Fish & Chips”!
Price/Value: Above Average to Excellent.
Yes, it’s hard making your way in the world today. It can take everything you’ve got. Taking a break from all your worries sure would help a lot. Wouldn’t you like to get away? Where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came?
If that’s you then sometimes you may want to toast “Cheers!” at Seaside Terrace! A local restaurant with no pretenses and the friendliest staff around. And yes, they – Taka-san and Christy both know our name there.
Finding little gems along Sunabe Seawall is a favorite pastime for me and my wife. Walking the wall to and from these eateries not only settles our full bellies, but also negates the potential for “trouble” involving the mixing of adult beverages and automobiles. But it is just the serenely peaceful and stunning views of the East China Sea, especially during our sea-breeze cooled, coral-colored autumnal sunsets, that makes this place so…special. Taka-san’s Seaside Terrace sparkles in this regard, offering indoor Contemporary European-sheik seating amidst a relaxing, romantic atmosphere, outdoor garden-inspired and umbrella shaded accommodations, and although it doesn’t offer views of the ocean, it’s literally across the street from the seawall.
When we first discovered the Seaside Terrace, Taka-san was running two eateries (the other, Seaside Café, located near Araha Beach), and was open for dinner. However, to our sad disappointment, dinner is no longer served here. The menu is heavily influenced by Taka-san’s classical European culinary training, especially in the Italian dishes he offers. However, although we continue to ask him about his opening again for dinner, the bistro remains opens only for breakfast, lunch, and everything and anything in-between until 1700 (last order 1600).
However, it is in his breakfast options where Seaside Terrace really shines, particularly in their special “desert” French toast that is, in my wife’s opinion, the only way to truly eat breakfast. Scrumptious French toast, topped with ice cream, capped with banana, drizzled with both chocolate and caramel sauces, topped with whipped cream and then finished with frozen fresh fruit? What’s not to like about that! The menu, however, offers a full range of lunch options, including appetizers and salads.
This café offers a relaxed, quaint, and welcoming dining experience. The food is prepared from scratch using fresh ingredients, and is crafted with care and presented with the personal pride of the owner. There is limited seating, with a maximum capacity of somewhere around 12 inside and 12 outside. The layout provides an advantageous space for small groups of friends, family or coworkers to gather and enjoy comforting company along with a fabulous meal. Please note, however, that there is only one chef, working a small kitchen fashioning each meal to order, so be patient. In fact, Seaside Terrace only takes groups of 6 maximum, and if you have 4 or more, Taka-san highly encourages reservations. The food and service are worth it; the contemporary surroundings and the soft, sensual soundtrack make any type of wait relaxing and enjoyable. Be forewarned: on Sundays during brunch hours and on major American holidays (like Mother’s Day), the joint can be hopping!
The pasta sets are large and indulgent, and I’m told that Taka-san has perfected his very own delightful trademark sauce over the years. Having eaten here more than a few times now, we find ourselves being friends and neighbors to the staff…of two! The owner is friendly and proud, and he always greets and chats with us whenever he has time. Christy, the half-Japanese, half-Filipino hostess/waitress is studying English, so be sure to chat her up. One of the finer aspects of eating with Taka-san is the personal indulgence one feels in having a 5-star chef cook just for you.
In addition to the standard (yet scrumptious) menu fare are the specials listed daily on two blackboards. And don’t forget the bar service, although without dinner entrees the drinks offered have been somewhat reduced. One of my and Jody’s favorite cocktails ever were enjoyed here – the Moulin Rouge – and we liked them so much we brought our own bottle of Cassis to Taka-san and had four of them made to go with our afternoon brunch! They were delightfully surprised at our throw-back to last year’s menu; we were sensuously satisfied with the playfulness of the frozen fruit, Casis and whatever other concoctions were stirred into that brew. Ask for the drink when you’re there; perhaps with enough demand he’ll put it back on the menu!
Taka-san has always dreamed of operating a high-end American-Japanese fusion restaurant. And he is off to a wonderful start on achieving that goal. He and his staff are more than willing to make sure you have a truly indulgent dining experience.
Check it out for yourself. And be sure to tell them your name. Cheers!!
Directions (from Kadena Gate 1): On Route 58 heading south make first right at the first light (Family Mart). Travel west to the 3rd light (which is the last light before hitting the Seawall), turn left. Head south two blocks and turn right at the signage for the Sunabe Smile Dental Clinic. Go all the way to the seawall and turn right (the seawall road here is one-way). Traveling one short block along the seawall, look to your right and you’ll see a large billboard for Seaside Terrace. Although there is some parking across the side-street, it is best to park along the seawall here.
Hours: Closed Tuesdays, open 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. weekdays and 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. weekends. Reservations are suggested.
Payment: Cash-only, Yen or U.S. Dollars