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“Mom prefers this place”
Review of Izakaya Mai

Izakaya Mai
Ranked #101 of 432 Restaurants in San Mateo
Cuisines: Japanese
Restaurant details
Reviewed 26 August 2016

Some restaurants claim to be Japanese restaurants but are usually own and operated by non-Japanese serving food that isn’t quite authentic Japanese. My mom who immigrated from Japan over 50 years ago enjoys coming here. It doesn’t have the crowds like at the other popular Japanese restaurant with a Zagat award which I won’t name. My mom prefers this one as it is usually quiet on the nights I take her here. There is a large selection of dishes you can order and the quality is very good.

My wife and I have taken mom here for lunch and dinner and we always enjoy our meals here. The atmosphere is pleasant and mom says the food is “Oishi” (delicious). Coming from an elderly Japanese mom, that’s better than any award a Japanese restaurant can get.

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Thank henryonatrip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3 - 7 of 19 reviews

Reviewed 28 May 2016

We came here on a Friday night and the restaurant was totally full. We got seated quickly (within 2 min), but it took over 30 min to wait for a sushi deluxe. That is horrible. Every time we asked about it, they said it took time to prepare for so much food and it was almost ready. So maybe you should try to go there on weekdays when it is not so busy or just do not order a sushi deluxe or something alike. After all, the food is good actually.

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Thank Usher O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 July 2015

Downtown San Mateo - and I refer exclusively to the 5-block area west of Central Park - is a huge hub of ethnic restaurants with Japanese cuisine being one of the most dominant. The place is teeming with foodies from all over the world who have their own particular preferences. If a restaurant wants to succeed here, it can only be first-rate - not in its decor, but its food. That's where Izakaya Mai manages very well. You won't find any tatami matted rooms or shoji screens; in fact very little of its interior will tell you that it is a Japanese restaurant. I had grilled saba at the time of my visit which was authentically prepared and very tasty. We had a tako-shumai appetizer which was disappointing though: it was served late and the taste and texture were bland. Nonetheless, I give it a good review as the rest of the meal went well, with prompt service (and a complimentary green tea ice cream at the end!). The place is very popular so I can easily see these guys thriving here for the long haul.

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Thank frtw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 March 2015

This place is really good, nothing pops out as great, but everything was good. No problems at all. If you do go here make sure you write you name on the board, it is on the right side of the wall as you walk in. When I was there, I seen a few people get skipped because they did not know that they needed to do this. Enjoy the food should you visit. I am sure you will return.

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Thank Robert R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2014

This place is open late most nights of the week, so it's great for that late-night snack you're craving.

It features lots of small plates, and it's not your typical sushi place, that's what makes it so good.

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Thank pfomin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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