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5 Differences Between Teppanyaki And Hibachi Grill Restaurants

Teppanyaki and Hibachi grill restaurants are both popular types of Japanese cuisine. But what’s the difference between them?

1. Location:  Teppanyaki restaurants are typically found in finer dining establishments, while Hibachi grill restaurants are more commonly found in strip malls or food courts.

This difference is likely due to the fact that Teppanyaki places focus on providing a luxurious and authentic Japanese dining experience, while  Hibachi places focus on providing a more casual and affordable Japanese dining experience.

2. Menu:  Teppanyaki menus focus on steak and seafood, while Hibachi menus offer a wider variety of dishes, including chicken, shrimp, and vegetables. This variety is likely due to the fact that Hibachi grills can cook multiple items at once, while teppanyaki grills can only cook one item at a time.

If you’re looking for an upscale Japanese dining experience, then a teppanyaki restaurant is probably your best bet. But if you’re looking for a more casual and affordable Japanese dining experience, then a hibachi grill restaurant is probably your best bet.

3. Cooking Style: Teppanyaki chefs cook food on a flat iron griddle, while Hibachi chefs use an open flame to cook food. Teppanyaki chefs have to be more careful with their timing and temperature, while hibachi chefs can be a bit more creative with their flare.

Hibachi chefs are also known for performing tricks with their knives or food, which you won’t see at a teppanyaki restaurant. An iron pan is placed on top of an oak charcoal grill or gas stove to cook the meals. As a result, teppanyaki was created. This style of BBQ cooking includes methods such as flipping, tossing, and stirring when preparing any meal. It is widely accepted that these cooking methods were inspired by hibachis, Japanese stoves typically made of clay with a grill situated above the bowl.

4. History: Teppanyaki grilling is not entirely sure when it originated, many Japanese believe that it started centuries ago when families would cook together. However, one more specific theory has gained traction in recent years. According to this belief, Teppanyaki began in 1945 with the help of a restaurant called Misono located in Tokyo, Japan.

Teppanyaki only became famous in the West during the latter part of the 20th century, when American soldiers and tourists sampled this unusual way of cooking. They were so impressed that they decided to bring teppanyaki back to the Western World, where it quickly became popular.

The term teppanyaki came from two words: teppan which means iron plate, and yaki, which means grilled or pan-fried.

Hibachi is a Japanese term that refers to the grill’s cylindrical shape. Hibachi has a detachable grill on top of it. Wood or charcoal may be added to it after that. Hibachis were originally designed to serve as a piece of heating equipment in homes.

Sometimes, they are also used to light cigarettes or serve as a light. However, as time passed by, out of ingenuity and necessity, the hibachi became a tool to cook food. This became even more popular during World War II when soldiers needed a portable cooking tool.

5. Focus: The primary objective of Hibachi is to prepare meals, particularly meat on a grill. Teppanyaki’s major appeal lies in the entertainment value it provides.

Diners can watch as the chef skillfully prepares their meal right in front of them.

Hibachi chefs also often put on a show, flipping utensils and ingredients in the air and sometimes even catching them in their hats. This focus on entertainment means that teppanyaki restaurants are typically more expensive than hibachi restaurants.

Look at the type of grills that Teppanyaki and Hibachi restaurants employ to identify them quickly. Both cuisines concentrate on grilling meals, but they do so with different equipment.

The hibachi grill, also known as shichirin in Japan, is a small barbecue grill that has an open-grate design on top. It is convenient because of its size and portability. The charcoal provides the main source of heat for cooking with a hibachi grill.

Teppanyaki, on the other hand, is a little more elegant in appearance. In Western nations such as the United States, it has been substantially improved. Teppanyaki grills have a broad rectangular flat iron griddle above a heat source that has been heavily modified from its Japanese origins.

There are several key differences between teppanyaki and hibachi grill restaurants. The most obvious is the type of cooking surface used – a teppan (iron griddle) in teppanyaki restaurants and an open Hibachi grill in hibachi restaurants. This affects both the flavor of the food and how it’s cooked. 

  • Teppanyaki chefs use a combination of techniques to cook your food, including tossing it in the air, while hibachi chefs cook everything on the grill right in front of you. 
  • Another difference is that teppanyaki menus typically have more variety than hibachi menus. You’ll find dishes like sushi, sashimi, and teriyaki chicken on teppanyaki menus, but not as often on hibachi menus. 
  • The final major difference is price. Teppanyaki meals are generally more expensive than hibachi meals, due to the higher cost of preparing food on a teppan vs an open Hibachi grill. If you’re looking for a fun dining experience with friends or family, either type of restaurant can be a great choice – just be sure to know what you’re getting yourself into before making a reservation!

Are You Looking for Delicious Japanese Food and Some Family-Friendly Entertainment?


You’ve never had food this good! Kimono Restaurant offers a great place to take your family for entertainment, delicious eats, and fun. We start with the highest quality ingredients before grilling them right in front of you on our hibachi grill–the perfect way to get involved by watching as we prepare it just how YOU want it so there will be no surprises at all when they bite into your meal. This experience also gives us an opportunity to show off some amazing tricks which is where being entertained comes into play; our talented chefs will astound you even further by flipping meats around wildly or doing some other intricate, spectacular feats. If you’re looking for the perfect place to take your family for food, fun and entertainment, Kimono Japanese Restaurant in Benicia and Pleasanton, California, can’t be beaten! Join us today and experience the Kimono difference.

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