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3
  • Food3.5
  • Service3
  • Value2.5
  • Ambiance3.5
  • Reviews97

Kobe Japanese Steak House

1042 Alberni Street
Vancouver, BC V6E1A3
Tel: (604) 684-2451
Fax: (604) 684-0307
Neighbourhood: Central
  • Cuisine: Japanese, Steaks
  • Price: $$$$ ($45 or more)
  • Reservations: Accepted
  • Meals: Dinner
  • Hours: Mon - Sun: 5PM - 12AM
  • Canada’s first Japanese Steak House offers an array of Fantastic Steaks, Succulent Seafood, Teriyaki Chicken and Garden Fresh Vegetables. Colourful Samurai style Chefs perform with flashing blades as you watch your dinner being cooked. Intimate cocktail lounge and Japanese country styled décor enhanced by priceless artifacts.

Reviews

Displaying 1 - 20 of 97 Reviews FoundSort: Useful | Helpful | Reviews | Date
Great show, but just a bit pricy
By eating good food of Vancouver (128 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, January 27, 2014 - 1:04am [Dine in]

Last night my friend had a birthday party and decided to go to Kobe's since it was her 30th birthday.

Anyhow, we got to the restaurant and were told that EVERYONE had to arrive before we could get seated (Ok, not a major problem considering the type of place) When everyone got there we went and sat upstairs. we were a lot of people. but there was still space at our huge table, so other guests not in our party were seated there (My friend was not too happy about it, but what did she think? that they were going to waste good space by having it empty?)

I ordered the Teriyaki combo, which consisted of both steak and chicken (cut up) a bit of shrimp, vegetables, rice and even ice cream (dine out special $38, but regular $45)

The cook had put on a great show while cooking our food in front of us. they also provide us with these creamy sauces which went good with my meat. Anyhow, I did enjoy my food, but think $45 (and maybe even $38) is a little too much for what I got, but I guess the show is what people are somewhat paying for too.

I won't come on my own, or with friends for a night out, but I won't mind coming for another special occasion.

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A Fun Place To Eat With A Group
By BigAnthony of North Burnaby (106 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, April 16, 2011 - 3:45pm [Dine in]

I've eaten here many times & the food is always very good. I usually get "The Ultimate" a $50 meal that includes lobster, scampi, prawns, steak, chicken, rice, vegetables, soup. If you add $10 for a total of $60 two can share this meal. This is what I do when eating with my wife. You sit at a table where they are cooking so it's best to go with a large group to fill the table & avoid sitting with strangers. Also be prepared to smell like food when you leave -) The chef's are entertaining! Overall this is a fun place to eat & the food is always good.

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Come for the Entertainment
By xlee8 of Delta (113 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, June 20, 2009 - 2:09pm [Dine in]

Food: we ordered the Teriyaki Chicken and Hibachi Steak. All dinners come w/ rice, soup, appies, and veggies. The soup was very light and flavourful. The appies consisted of 3 little shrimps, but were very tasty. Overall the food was decent. It was cooked just right but I couldnt help but be reminded of the Koya at the food court...

Service/Ambiance: very attentive servers on hand in the vicinity. The ratio of staff to customers when we were there was almost 1:2 for a majority of the time. Our chef was nice and put on a little culinary show. It was not as flamboyant as some of the others we caught but it may have been due to the fact we had small children at our table. Decor wise the downstairs was very modern and upstairs it feels a bit more authentic w/ the subtle asian touches. I felt as if we were part of a production or show where everyone knew their parts very well. It was efficient but almost routine like and I was part of their assembly line and felt a bit rushed when they handed me my bill while I was still in the middle of my entree.

Value: Your def paying for ambiance, location, entertainment b/c I'm not sure my meal was worth the price tag. However, if you have your entertainment book card, do bring it to save a little mula!

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Bring a change of Clothes.Seriously
By stripperdj of east vancouver (55 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, July 14, 2010 - 10:59pm [Dine in]

Heres the one thing that people seem to skip over about Kobe's.
After you eat there,you stink.
Seriously,funky, BO type stink. The problem is,because everyone in your party smells,you dont notice it until you go out to a club,and people say, "whats that smell?"
Its from all the oil in the air coming from the teppanaki grills.

The food is "meh", meaning not very good for what they charge.
Ya,its somewhat entertaining to watch the chefs in their rehearsed acts,but I think thats kind of over and done with.If i'm paying huge bucks for a meal,I dont care about how they cook it,just how good it is.

(PS- Febreeze doesnt cover it up either.)

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Greasy atmosphere
By Norman of Vancouver East (75 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, December 23, 2005 - 12:06pm [Dine in]

Don't take a date here if she cares about her clothes. After we left we realized that we were covered from head to waist with a fine mist of grease. Nasty! The wait was too long (they kept lying about the wait time), the portions are really small and the price is high. We had to ask for things, like tea, that according to the menu are included with your meal. They sure bother you about buying more drinks ($$), though. There are better Japanese restaurants in town for the same price or less.

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Great show, great food
By jpcostales of Metrotown, Burnaby (70 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, October 14, 2007 - 12:14pm [Dine in]

Recommended. Great food with a great show from a friendly chef. His tricks are pretty stock, but entertaining nonetheless and I liked the cheesy strobe light he turned on when doing some of his show techniques.

Food - I ordered the steak & prawns and my significant other sampled the chicken teriyaki. Both dishes were superb and the accompanying veggies were fresh and tasty as well.

Service - I laughed looking at one of the previous reviews which described the waitresses as porn stars. Its a pretty accurate description, as I remember thinking to myself that their uniforms seemed very bachelor-party stripper-ish. Honestly, it takes away from the dining experience.

Ambiance - Incredible. Just a great idea for a restaurant. Great food and a great show turn in a nice place result in a great night out.

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Disappointing experience
By dneel of Tulsa, Oklahoma (5 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, July 30, 2014 - 9:02am [Dine in]

Based on the positive reviews I found here, I went to Kobe for some good food. But what a bad dining experience it was. We had made a dinner reservation for 7 pm, but when we arrived, we had to wait for another thirty minutes or so to get seated. Really? Then what was the whole purpose of making a reservation?

The food is overly priced here. And even bland. The hibachi steak I ordered lacked seasoning and was quite bland. I know that in restaurants like these (Benihana, etc) we also pay for the show that is put on by the chefs, but this was simply missing from our chef. Our chef did not put on much of a show and was extremely sloppy. I don't know if it was because he was tired or something, but given that each one of us paid $70+ for our food, it was disappointing.

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Cramped and Very Smokey inside
By straw_hut of Vancouver (downtown) (22 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, February 15, 2014 - 8:13pm [Dine in]

Went here for Valentines dinner with the signicant other....

We ended up being 30 min. late but they held our spot. Upon arriving, I immediately found out this place is cramped! If you are clausterphobic, you better go elsewhere. The dining area is on level 2 and 3 but the washroom is on level 1.

After sitting down on our table on the 3rd floor, I had to use the men's room so went all the way back down to the 1st floor. Unfortunately, some waitress spilled a bottle of beer right in front of me and drenched my nice shoes and lower part of the jeans. All the staff apologized and we got free sake.

When we were about to order, I double checked with another waitress about using the entertainment coupon good for 38$ off. She said we could not use it even though when I made reservations a week ago, a lady said it would be honored. We argued so we got $20 off our bill.

Despite these two shortcomings, the food was good and it wasn't terribly noisy inside so at least we could chat. We had to share a table with probably about 10 others as this is usually the case with Teppanyaki places. Also, our clothes and hair smelled heavily like oil and soya sauce right afterwards. Nothing more romantic than that! However, I'm not complaining since it will be like this for all places that cook in front of you.

Overall, it is a very pricey experience so I'd go here only if I could use the coupon. I'd rank this place one notch above Osaka teppanyaki.. Food and service was good, plus, there are a lot of hot waitresses and genuine Japanese workers. I gave Ambiance 2 stars because of it being cramped, oily and smokey inside.

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disappointed overall, not even real kobe beef
By Sid25 of Vancouver (1 Review)
Submitted Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 12:27pm [Dine in]

I went few nights ago with couple friends for dinner only to find that we had to wait 45min to be seated upstairs even though we arrived earlier than our reservation time.

Before you go upstairs, you HAVE to go throught the bar to purchased over priced drinks. We didn't want to order any drinks because we already had couple drinks at our friends house so we kindly asked if we can skip the lounge/bar. They refused because apprently upstairs was too full. Why would you make so many reservation that you can't even fit everyone in the restaurant and make them wait an extremely long time.

So finally we go upstairs to the 3rd floor where theres bigger tables. We had to share with other people, which was fine but had to wait till the seats were full to even order. One other point was that the waitress not the cocktail servers or drink servers doesn't speak english. I ask them simple questions but they look confused and don't answer properly which I had no clue what they were saying. One question I asked was if the beef was actually from Japan. Some other waitress came to me and answered my question only to say that ITs NOT. ITS ALBERTA BEEF NOT REAL KOBE BEEF. Finding that it's not kobe beef, it's extremely highly priced. not worth it.

We waited 45min and I wasn't planning to go to another restaurant so I ordered the Seafood combination. The chef came pretty fast which was nice, but after a while the 3rd floor was super hot and smokey. I asked if they can turn up the AC or do something with the smoke but nothing changed through out the dinner. it was very uncomfortable, disgusted with the heat. the most unpleasant experience I had in a vancouver restaurant. The food again was average, nothing special. My friends had the actual kobe beef dinner but honesly you could find better japanese restaurant with better services and better priced menus.

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Absolutely not worth the money, not even close
By WorkingStiff of Vancouver (1 Review)
Submitted Wednesday, May 18, 2011 - 3:43pm [Dine in]

What else is there to say.

The staff herded our group through like a few head of cattle, despite our having dropped well over $700. We were handed our bills before some of us were even finished eating.

The food is not bad, if you were eating a $12 stir fry bowl. In the context of the prices this place charges, I found it akin to highway robbery. I am honestly amazed that people could overlook such poor value.. maybe they are blinded by a spinning pepper shaker. My buddy was doing better tricks after a weekend bartending course.. and I'm not kidding.

Save your money and take it elsewhere, there are far better choices that are better, classier, more interesting and provide far more bang for the buck.

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Cool Beans
By kidmanplays of Vancouver (downtown) (1 Review)
Submitted Thursday, March 17, 2011 - 10:52pm [Dine in]

Okay, so they don't have beans. They do have really good food, though. Noticed the minimalist entrance and went inside, thinking it was just a bar or lounge or something, but when they asked me if I wanted to eat I said sure and followed the lady upstairs. I grabbed some sake and ordered some steak and lobster, had a good time watching the chef cook it and even bought him some sake. Dude practically juggled his knives while cutting the food into bite size chunks. Lobster was great but the mark of a good place, I think, is the steak, and the steak here was simply fantastic. Definitely coming back.

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Very dissappointed
By samaral of Surrey (1 Review)
Submitted Friday, March 11, 2011 - 1:18pm [Dine in]

I just wanted to write about our experience last night. I have never been to Kobe, but after hearing about it
I decided to surprise my husband by taking him last night. We have a two year old and run our own business,
we really don't get a lot of opportunities to go out.

Unfortunately we were both so dissappointed with the entire experience. We sat there for a good 15 minutes
without being welcomed. Finally someone came to take our order. I asked for beer and a pop. She said a cocktail
waitress will come and take drink orders.

A good 30 minutes later and the meal starting, no one had asked our table if we'd like a drink. I finallly asked someone
and she said she would find someone to help us. This entire time, about 5 waitresses are standing casually talking
with one another.... none of them doing anything!

The beer we requested was out of stock I guess - but every pop I asked for, she said "we don't have" finally she said
they had 7-up.

On top of all of this, our food tasted burnt. Neither of us could finish the meal. A young girl at our table was celebrating
her birthday. The waitress accidentally spilled her beer everywhere, which happens - but they did not even bring the
birthday girl a new bottle of beer - I was shocked.

$110 later and we left feeling a little glum - really wasnt what I had hoped for.

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Overrated.
By junie of Vancouver (2 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, July 18, 2008 - 12:47pm [Dine in]

We visited Kobe for the first time yesterday. We had a party of 14 and had made the reservation that same morning. When we got there, we were told that they have no record of it. And instead of perhaps contemplating that they might be the ones who had screwed up, we were accused of never having made that call. The decor was dark and dingy. When we walked into the dining area, you can smell old, rancid grease. There was a film of sticky grease on the chairs. All in all, the place looked and felt like a dump. As soon as we sat down, they wanted to take our orders. What happened to giving customers a chance to look at the menu first?
My partner and I decided to share the ultimate platter which was the most expensive and looked like it had the most food. We were told that if people decided to share a dish, they had to pay and extra $15 in order to get extra appetizers for the 2nd person. Well, the $15 got you one small bowl of soup, a bowl of rice and 3 tiny shrimps-I can't call them prawns, even though they were advertised as such.
The seafood was done extremely poorly-overcooked and too chewy. If you want good seafood done right, go to places like Kirin or Sun Sui Wah. The chicken and steak were done well, but the portions were small. For almost $80 for just one dish and told by the waitress that it's more than enough for two people, I expect quality and quantity. They tried to trick you by cutting everything up in smalls pieces so that it's spread out over your plate. Push them back together and you'll see that there's not that much. Morton's or Gotham's definitely offer better value and food than this place.
As for the much ballyhooed show from the chef, we got to see a fire on the grill and the onion volcano...woohoo! Aside from that, he just cooked. To be fair, I guess whether you get entertained or not depends on what chef you get.
I would never go back. Even if they were charging half price for their stuff, you could never get me to go back. There are so many other wonderful restaurants in Vancouver that deserve the premium prices that they charge for their food-this is not one of them.

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Good food, entertaining, but you'll be bugged to buy drinks
By jcont of Kitsilano, Vancouver (26 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, August 18, 2011 - 3:17pm [Dine in]

Let me start off by saying that I am a repeat customer at this restaurant because I truely enjoy the food. However, you can keep in mind that (1) you will be ushered into the lounge, even if you arrive on time for your reservation so you can buy overpriced drinks before you are taken upstairs (2) you will be constantly bugged during the entire meal by very attractive bar maids to order more drinks (3) if you don't order more drinks, any request for water or tea (free beverages) will be ignored (4) you will leave smelling like the food. The food is wonderful, and worth putting up with the afore mentioned. My favorite meal is the Ultimate.

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Dissapointed
By poorestoliver of Vancouver (24 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, August 11, 2010 - 5:28pm [Dine in]

I had heard that this place had not improved much over the years but had to check it out for myself. As the other commentators have mentioned, you place leaves you smelly. The smoke from the grills permeates clothing and ruins the atmosphere. When we were there last week we noticed a lot of shadey characters wearing a lot of cheap looking bling. Lots of high end gangster looking cars parked out on the street too. The lights are always down low in the expensive bar on the ground floor. My sense is that the only people that frequent this place are gangsters, people with coupons, first timers who do not know better, and unsuspecting tourists. The little show the chefs put on has become rather lame over the years. I would not recommend this place as it continues to dissapoint.

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mandatory tips with RUDE servers
By kuma of Coquitlam (26 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, November 16, 2009 - 11:08pm [Dine in]

Okay I've always wanted this go to this place to try. I knew that it's a pricey restaurant before I went in. But hey! The prices were still HIGHer than I expected (crazy). I loved the show that the chef gave us, our chef was funny compared to the chef next to our section of tables. It's great to see the show for ONCE even tho it was incredible, but let's be real, we don't want to spend almost $100 for 2 ppl to see a person throwing foods and fire around in front of you all the time.

Food was not bad BUT consider the expensive prices, I would get so much better food somewhere else.

Okay here comes the part WHY I'm giving it a 2 for value and 4 for ambiance when I could give it a 4 for value and 5 for ambiance.. BECAUSE of the RUDE service they had! Honestly, those servers DO NOT deserve any tips at all. The tips are mandatory therefore they do not care giving out attitudes since they can get money anyway! I was really unhappy about giving any tips to them due to extreme bad services and attitude. Before we even finish our meal, they just quickly started cleaning up and setting up. They wanted to push us to finish up eating and leave so they can turn the tables around. (you will know what I mean when u get there) You might think we could be just eating slow... sorry but they started rushing us RIGHT AFTER the COOKING SHOW was over!!

Anyway, what I hated the most was the service or else I would love this place. I may sound extreme here. Just wait till you try this place.

Lastly, I think it's a good place to visit once. Once, enough!

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A Very Expensive Food Show
By bonger of Vancouver (23 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, October 6, 2006 - 5:50pm [Dine in]

Came here many years ago and seeing the 5 stars for everything baffles me.

If you really take a moment to think what you are eating and the price it costs, Kobe is just a glorified Japanese food fair stuff.

Think about it, Japanese food fair cooks their food on a hot plate and you can eat it for $5.99.

Kobe does the same thing, of course ingredients are superior and good, but what you are really paying a premium for is the show....for them to toss the food in the air and cut it up infront of you.

So if you want to see your food juggled and cut to very nice pieces go to Kobe, if you want really authentic Japanese food, this is not the place to go.

I remember asking the chef if he was Japanese and he answered he is Chinese and learned his "art" from local community college.

Take a look around the room and check out how many Japanese customers you see???

Nevertheless, this place has a nice ambience, fun and definitely worth trying at least once for an experience.

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Nothing spectacular
By hannerz of Cloverdale (11 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 10:45am [Dine in]

Food and Value: Food is just okay. But the amount of food they give you is not worth the price you're paying. For two people, we paid approximately $100.00. Or maybe because we're also paying to watch the chef's performance? Well, when we went there for my friend's birthday, our chef sucked! Totally not worth it.

Ambiance is okay. It's dim-lighted. It's a little crowded.

Service: It's hard to catch the server's attention. It took sometime before I could have a single fork. We had to fill our cups ourselves. Good thing the jug of water was just behind us.

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An overall good experience
By Mecca-nism of texas (18 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, July 11, 2008 - 8:51pm [Dine in]

My fiancé and I had an overall good dining experience at Kobe Steak House. My fiancé has been to Japan on several occasions and spent months at a time there. The reviewer below implied that Kobe Steak House didn’t compare to those in Japan, he’s probably right, but for Vancouver it’s pretty good. The chef was fun, the server ok, the food really great, the atmosphere--dark. If you’re looking for something different, then give it a go.

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I regret
By mayo of Burnaby (19 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, May 14, 2008 - 2:01pm [Dine in]

I had a friend came to town for a short visit. I TOTALLY regret about bringing her there for the only dinner we had in town. I heard my colleague mentioned she used to go to this place a lot and loves it. And I asked my friend if she would want to give it a try.

Then, ok, once I stepped into the restaurant, I knew I might got into a wrong place. The decoration.... It's like the classic "fansy Japanese bar" in a 80's Hollywood movie. And then the waitress came to greet us. OH, a white girl with an Asian dress. OK, the whole place gave me a feeling that I am inside a 80's movie setting of a Japanese place that ninja are everywhere and all Japanese men are samurai. COM'ON. It's 2008!!

Ok, let's forget about the deco for a sec. If the food is good, then I can live with it.

Food, pricy for the quality. The taste is very westernize.... it's not Japanese food (I've eaten Teppanyaki in Japanese before). Everything was on the salty side. Nothing special. I can grill and stir fly the same quality of food at home, seriously.

Ok, while they cook, the chefs would give a show of throwing knifes. playing the pepper mill like bruce lee, etc, but they have no facial expression AT ALL. If the "show" is the selling point of the restaurant, they totally fail it. I felt like I was watching a circus show, but the preformers (the chefs) gave me the look that they want to get off work sooner. And I am not kidding, my chef ran away with light speed after he finished cooking. And the service wasn't great either. The chefs only cook, they don't take the order. The person serve the food also wouldn't take order. And then the person who can take my extra order came, but sorry, she doesn't take the order of the drink. Then you need to get the person who can take the order of a drink. I thought human can be multi-task, but not the staff in Kobe.

I regret because there are so many nice places in downtown, but I brought my friend to this crappy so-called Japanese restaurant. After dinner, I told her there are many good food in Vancouver, but I just brought her to a wrong place.

This place could be cool for kids and people who barely meet Asian in their life. Otherwise, it's totally not cool. I won't go back again.

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