FOR NEW TRANSPLANTS, THE SIMPLE DISH DOESN'T FIT THE NARRATIVE OF THE SHINY, NEW CITY (THRILLIST).It's a bit ironic that something as simple and Americanized as teriyaki was so prominent in a city now known for its super hip, urban eats. And, the hipster attitude in Seattle has crowded out lowbrow places such as teriyaki joints - but nonetheless, it's still part of Seattle's fabric.
Sweet and sticky with sauce, all Seattle-style teriyaki stems from the basic formula Toshihiro Kasahara developed when he opened his first shop, Toshi’s Teriyaki, in 1976. The meat, traditionally chicken thighs slippery and brown from marinade, gets slapped on a hot grill. The high heat caramelizes the sugars, crisping the meat and leaving it with a crunch of barely burnt soy on the outside. Sliced into bite-size pieces, it’s served fanned out across a molded mound of white-as-snow rice, the sauce seeping down between the grains. The salad, like the meat, is sweet and crunchy, the iceberg lettuce and slivers of carrot and cabbage reminiscent of coleslaw, with only the rice vinaigrette separating it from old-school American picnic fare.Nonetheless, I did a quick search to find a decent remaining teriyaki shop - they're like fast food in Seattle - and Kyoto Teriyaki was the closest. I ordered my chicken teriyaki, plus an egg roll. It comes with white rice and slaw salad. There was a giant bottle of teriyaki at the table that I slathered on, and I thought it was great! It's not a complex meal, but the chicken was moist, slightly crisp on the outside, and the teriyaki was sweet. If teriyaki joints were as plentiful here as they are in Seattle, I'd be in trouble.