Hapa Japanese Cuisine – The small band of quality independent restaurants in Owasso grows one more strong

By on September 4, 2015

It was an inauspicious beginning to his artful culinary career when 13 year old Daisuke Tanaka cooked eggs and toast for his parents in his native city of Yokohama, Japan. Now, with over ten years of experience, he fuses Japanese cuisine with French, Mediterranean and European styles to create HAPA Japanese Cuisine, newly opened in Owasso.

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HAPA is a Hawaiian term for a harmonious blend of Caucasian and Asian cultures and it aptly describes the owners’ creative approach to Japanese Cuisine. Co-owner Masataka Ido, former Stars soccer player, met Daisuke when he worked for a food distribution company. During casual meetings they began dreaming of their own restaurant where both men could be their own boss. This dream, realized at Hapa Japanese Cuisine manifest their concept of high quality, high service for their guests with their mantra, “Quality food, quality service with a great experience!” This intersection of beautiful presentation, courteous service and delicious food meet at HAPA, located at 13720 E 86 Street in Owasso.

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In addition to a dining room that is open Monday through Friday, 11 – 2 for lunch and 5 – 9 for dinner, the restaurant boasts a drive through pick up window that stays very busy. Saturday the restaurant is open 4 – 9 pm for dinner and the restaurant is closed on Sunday.

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An exceptional treat: HAPA allows guests to build their own sushi roll from a large variety of ingredients that include traditional sushi ingredients such as tuna, salmon and eel along with unexpected ingredients such as jalapeno, peach and sweet squash.
This creative fusion of Japanese style mixed with Daisuke’s imaginative style reflect his interest in a variety of inspirations such as architecture, engineering, Thai and French cuisines. The result is food artistically prepared with exceptional taste.

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On our visit we sampled many of the restaurants adventurous dishes along with more traditional offerings. The Tuna Fantasista, a mixed salad with marinated tuna, sesame seeds, scallions, soy ginger with a citrus vinaigrette is indicative of the care that goes into each dish. Enjoyed with apple or pineapple sake, this makes a fine lunch or dinner.

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The refreshing Naruto Salad, an ambitious collision of thinly sliced cucumbers, cream cheese, msago, avocado, daikon, spinach and a choice of meat (we chose salmon) is also available in a vegetarian version. Both are served with sesame oil and citrus dressing that is so delightful and healthy, you’ll never miss the traditional soy sauce. Just another way that HAPA creativity scores high for those wanting freshness, flavorful and healthy dishes.

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The Epicurean Salad is a feast with crumbled mozzarella, petite tomatoes, diced cucumber, seasonal fruit, smoked salmon, tilapia and cilantro in a yuzu citrus dressing all resting over baby spinach.

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Sushi rolls such as Brown Eyed Girl with shrimp tempura, garlic cream cheese and avocado are some of the restaurants most requested items. This roll, topped with roasted salmon, peach and habanero, drizzled with unagi sauce and a tangy berry reduction show the diversity of the cuisine offered.

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My personal favorite? The Star Ocean roll white fish, jalapeno, garlic cream cheese, cilantro and avocado. Top with seared beef and salmon, torched in mayo and eel sauce, hot sauce, death mayo, pepper sauce, friend onion and fried jalapenos, this dish is both creamy and crunchy, sweet and savory.

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For those who enjoy entrees, try the Hapa Chicken which features marinated tempura friend chicken, mushrooms and zucchini sautéed in sweet Hapa sauce. Served over fried harusame noodles with a house special side along with steamed rice. It’s both a generous serving and a delicious one.

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For dedicated sushi fans, don’t miss the Sashimi Sampler with chef’s choice of 10 piece sushi sashimi plate. It is rare to see imaginative sides, such as shredded beets and shaped ginger wasabi, which are HAPA’s signature. HAPA also offer a wine list and a Happy Hour with a choice of 5 sushi rolls for $3.00 each. Happy Hour is Monday through Friday, 5 – 6 PM, Saturdays 4 – 6 PM.

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HAPA Japanese Cuisine

13720 East 86th St N, Owasso, OK 74055

918.272.2727

www.hapaok.com

The Novel Gardener

About The Novel Gardener

"The Novel Gardener", Maurie Traylor, lives, creates, writes, paints, gardens and cooks in Mid-Town Tulsa. Her work has appeared in Oklahoma Gardener, Edible Tulsa Magazine and The Tulsa Literary Review. When not writing or painting, Maurie works with clients in creating meaningful spaces for home and garden. Her inspiration for her creative life stems from her family, namely her grandmother, whose garden and kitchen fed migrant workers and a large family during The Great Depression. Following that example, Maurie begins each day with the question, "What can we create today?"

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