I'm a mother to three, living in and loving Fiji for the past 13 years. I also do wedding, event and portrait photography under my business, Island Encounters Photography, based in Nadi, Fiji. www.islandencountersphotography.com
Published June 2nd 2013
Teppanyaki dining in Nadi, Fiji
If I had to choose my favourite restaurant in Nadi, it would be Daikoku, hands-down. Here you are guaranteed amazing food, smiling service, and the opportunity to bond with family or friends as you share in the Daikoku experience with them.
As you pull into the car park you'll notice the structure of the double story building is traditionally Japanese. Amazingly, each piece of it was brought over from Japan and assembled here in Nadi in order to guarantee authenticity not only in the food but also the ambiance. Beautiful!
Downstairs you can order off a traditional Japanese menu, including sushi, sashimi, tempura, noodles and much more (including Japanese drinks). The downstairs is popular as a lunch option and serves delicious food. However, come 6:00 PM, the upstairs opens for teppanyaki. This is why I come.
As your smiling host directs you to your table (reservations recommended, call 670-3622), you will see a large room full of iron griddles surrounded by tables. This room is used for traditional teppanyaki cooking, where the chef prepares your food in front of you on the iron teppan, or griddle. Each teppan has a u-shaped table around it that seats around 8 guests.
If you come as a group, it's a fun and bonding dining experience as together you'll watch your chef chop, flambe and flip as he cooks. If you come as a couple or a smaller group, you will probably share a table with others.
The menu offers a variety of meats and vegetables that can be ordered teppanyaki-style. Each person can order individually, but I find it's more fun to order a larger quantity of choices that everyone can share a taste of. They will be cooked in front of you and divided among the group in turn. Make sure your order includes the shrimp, because the flambe is just so much fun, and the shrimp are to-die-for. Trust me. The fried rice is also a fun order--the chef will cook the egg, roll it up and then chop it dramatically, with pieces flying everywhere.
Your dining experience will begin with a salad so delicious even my kids eat it. (If anyone figures out how to duplicate this ginger-inspired salad dressing, let me know!). Then you'll be served hot miso soup, followed by whatever main courses you ordered.
The chefs at Daikoku are energetic, friendly and fun. Their showmanship may not rival some overseas teppanyaki restaurants, but you are guaranteed amazing food and a good show--the best in Nadi in my humble opinion. Give Daikoku's a chance--you won't be disappointed!