Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Bowie Restaurant Project: (68) Hibachi Bowl

For an explanation of the Bowie Restaurant Project, look here.

For a list of all the Bowie Restaurant Project reviews, look here.

Hibachi Bowl, 3856 Town Center Blvd.
Most Recent Foursquare Check-in: 6/25/2013
Total Foursquare Check-ins: 2
Pre-Foursquare Visits: No
Rating: 0.5 out of 5 stars

I have a rule that I have to visit a restaurant twice before writing a review. It's a bad sign when your lunch companions try to talk you into breaking that rule after your first visit. But if I hadn't, I would have given this place 0 stars, instead of the coveted half-star. One of our complaints was that "Hibachi" implies Japanese grill, and none of the foods on offer for that first visit were remotely Japanese, nor grilled. They advertised "Teriyaki Chicken," but none was in sight.

On my second visit, the guy who operates the grill had shown up, so I had some teriyaki chicken. It wasn't awful. It wasn't good, either. It had nothing to do with an actual hibachi, and there were no bowls in sight.

On my first visit, I was offered toothpick samples of all three types of chicken and immediately dreaded ordering a full portion of any of them. If you go, try the Teriyaki Chicken; it doesn't inspire feelings of dread.

Even the rice didn't taste very good, though. One colleague said that her vegetables somehow managed to be flavorless without being overcooked. The other colleague declined to eat at Hibachi Bowl and went across the street to Five Guys for a hot dog. She was the day's winner.

I don't understand this restaurant's purpose. If you really want bad Asian food, you could just go next door to Asian Chao. But you'd be better off walking across the street to Five Guys for a hot dog.

Bowie Restaurant News

While making my second visit to Hibachi Bowl, I noticed another restaurant is on its way to joining the food court. "Carolyn Quinns" will apparently feature fresh fish, candied yams, fried chicken, BBQ, macaroni & cheese, turkey wings and collard greens. Some sort of Southern theme? A Google search was fruitless, so I suspect it's not a chain -- there may even be a real "Carolyn Quinn."

New restaurants are breaking out all over. The Olive Grove restaurant will be occupying the space in Hilltop Plaza where Outback used to be before it moved. I gather it's like an Olive Garden.

Also, Bang Bang Mongolian Grille is changing its name and format.  It will be called "Soyomobo." I'm not sure if this will constitute a new restaurant, but I'm leaning towards "yes."

Further, Irie Cafe a few weeks ago posted electrical permits. That's further along than the Muffin Man ever got, so I guess that's a good sign.

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