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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Upmarket restaurant

Tue–Sun 5:30pm–11:00pm

Features Date-friendly
Bar Beer, wine, liquor
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Accepted


2906 N. Henderson Ave.
Dallas, Texas
(214) 828-2400
Tei Tei Robata Bar
Sushi is great here, but stick with the off-the-menu robata items

If Tei Tei Robata Bar isn’t the best Japanese restaurant in Dallas, it’s in an exhilarating sumo caged death match with Tei An for the top spot. Though frustratingly (yet cozily) tiny, the dining room is taut and rich in wood grain. Plus it’s well lit. Which is good because you really want to see such delicacies as cod roe (or milt, which is um…the sperm-filled reproductive gland of a fish), sea snails, sun-dried king mackerel, lushly nutty uni, Kumamoto oysters on the half shell, icefish, etc.

Tei Tei specializes in robata grilling, or cooking on a small apparatus fired with wood charcoal. From the grill you can get charred smelts, yellowtail collar, baby octopus, and sometimes beef tongue. Park yourself in front of the robata bar. Watch the chefs execute their craft with swift, highly calibrated skill. Peer into the deep ice case filled with the evening’s robata offerings: silvery mackerels, smelt, snails, and lobsters still twitching in the berms of crushed ice.

Though the selection is truncated, the sushi is excellent: cool and fresh, like a slightly briny lick on the tongue. If you’ve been to Japan, you’ll revel in Tei Tei’s authenticity. Be sure to ask about dishes not listed on the menu. They are even more freakily good than the selections they admit to on the menu or the specials boards.

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