Tanto Japanese Restaurant – Sunnyvale, CA

Another S&A recommendation (yes, they are our personal restaurant guide). We had reservations for 8pm on a Friday night; reservations are very much recommended because it is not a big place and waits can get long because customers tend to sit around drink and eat for quite a while.

I guess it is the whole izakaya concept – small plates of all kinds of dishes (fried, broiled, grilled) paired with an extensive list of drinks. Perfect to sit around, have a few laughs with good food and drinks.

(I didn’t take pictures of the restaurant, and it was so full that I did not what to weird other people out by taking pictures of them). Here are some sample menu items instead~

Edamame $3

Boiled green beans – standard like every other edamame u get.


Gyutan $6.50

Salt broiled beef tongue

This was delicious!!! It was definitely one of the better prepared beef tongues I have had. Chewy and crunchy, cut to the right thickness and very very flavourful.


Kurobata Shabu Shabu Salad $7.95

Boiled sliced pork salad

The pork in the salad was a crowd pleaser. A very light salad which is a good contrast to our other dishes. Personally, I thought it was almost too light and a little bland.


Aigamo Tataki $10.50

Seared duck breast (sliced)

One of my favourites of the night, but I am biased when it comes to duck especially well prepared duck. I was impressed at how well this duck breast was cooked – it has a light vinegratte to give it some acid. Might not be a dish for individuals who don’t like gami-ness in their meat, as it is prominent in the dish.


Gyu Ishiyaki $12.50

Hot Stone plate beef

This is a definite crowd pleaser. The beef is mixed and cook in the crazy hot stone bowl at the table. So the early rate pieces were delicious. Flavourful, perfect over rice and oh so tender.


Anago Tamagotoji $8.50

Eel simmered with egg

Good dish. Nothing exciting, very simple light broth with extremely soft silky tofu. The texture of the well becomes quite weird tho. Not too bad.


Tai Yakimeshi $18.50

Fried rice cooked with red snapper.

This dish looked way cooler when it got placed on the table. It had a giant red snapper head rice on the top and the server debones it and then mixes everything, then portioned it into our bowls for us.

I really enjoyed this. It is not very seasoned but you can season w chili peppers or soy sauce at your own discretion. The fish becomes little flakes mixed w the rice – like a japanese version of Bibimbap~




Total damage – not too sure coz A picked up the tab (Thanks A!) but estimated about $25 a pop for a decent size meal~

Personal rating – 3.5 out of 5 (Very good)

Dishes were all good or very good.The menu is ridiculously extensive (over 30 items per page of a 2 page menu). So I have not tried a lot of them, for now 3.25 seems fair. Service was slow, ambiance was great with lots of noise, drinking, laughing and food all around us, prices were reasonable for their value.

Note: This place is easy to miss when driving by at night. It is literally right next to a KFC and looks like a little shack. Their sign is tiny compared to some Bikini Bar sign right above theirs as you drive close to the plaza so you might miss it.




Tanto Japanese Restaurant

1063 E El Camino Real
Sunnyvale, CA 94087

(408) 244-7311

Tanto Japanese on Urbanspoon

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