• Planning a Work Party at Our Teppanyaki Restaurant

    If you’re looking for a fun way to bond with coworkers, consider holding a work party at House of Genji. Whether you’re looking for a unique experience for a holiday party or just an excuse to spend some time with your work friends out of the office, our teppanyaki restaurant is an essential ingredient in an event to remember. Here is what you need to know about planning a work party around our teppanyaki dining experience.

    What exactly is teppanyaki?
    Teppanyaki refers to food that has been cooked on a hot iron—in other words, on a flat grill top. At a teppanyaki restaurant, a selection of food is prepared on a large grill that is surrounded by a dining table. Guests sit around the grill and watch their meals being cooked in front of them. Teppanyaki chefs always entertain their guests with their amazing knife skills and dramatic plating abilities.

    What is served at a teppanyaki meal?

    Teppanyaki is highly adaptable. Guests can choose from chicken, steak, lobster, shrimp, scallops, calamari, or some combination of meats. Soup, salad, rice, and veggies are also included. Some meals are also served with desserts. At House of Genji, we have a range of appetizers and side orders available to complement your meal, including edamame, age-gyoza, tempura, and agedashi tofu. We also offer sushi and sashimi and a variety of dinner salads.

    Why is teppanyaki good for a work party?

    Teppanyaki dining is very different from your standard work dinner. Thanks to the communal nature of the seating and cooking, you and your coworkers will get to enjoy a unique experience together. It’s the perfect opportunity to shrug off the demands of the office and focus on having fun together instead. Spending some time together bonding outside of work will help build more productive relationships in the office.

    Start planning your work event at House of Genji today by calling our restaurant. Find out about our menus and set up a time to come to our teppanyaki restaurant in San Jose by calling (408) 453-8120.

  • A Look at Dining Etiquette in Japan

    When you visit Japan, there are many different customs you will get to experience. Japanese dining etiquette can often be confusing for Westerners visiting the country for the first time. Although everyone is understanding of how different the dining experience is for people visiting the country and are patient as you learn new etiquette rules, it can helpful to learn as much as you can about the norms before you go. Here is a closer look at some basic Japanese dining etiquette rules, so feel more relaxed in Japanese restaurants.

    Chopstick Basics
    Using chopsticks can take practice, so use them whenever you get a chance before your visit. In Japan, don’t point chopsticks at people or dishes or wave them around while you’re talking. You shouldn’t suck any sauces off your chopsticks or stab foods that are hard to pick up. Never place your chopsticks upright in rice, which is symbolic of death, as is passing food with chopsticks. Don’t lay your chopsticks next to your plate when you’re done eating, as this indicates that you haven’t finished.


    Tipping is not common in Japan. In fact, it is often considered to be insulting. In restaurants, wait staff will often accept tips from Westerners in order to avoid embarrassing them. However, it’s best to avoid the practice completely—in restaurants, hotels, cabs, and anywhere else you would normally leave a tip in a Western country.


    Something that may feel strange to Westerners but is expected in Japan is sipping directly from a soup bowl. Slurping is also encouraged, as it demonstrates that you are enjoying the food. Always clean your plate completely. Leaving anything behind, even a small amount of rice or sauce, is considered rude.

    At House of Genji, you’ll enjoy traditional Japanese teppanyaki dining and get plenty of chances to practice with your chopsticks. Contact us today at (408) 453-8120 to find our more about our cocktail lounge and menu of Japanese food in San Jose.

  • Visiting House of Genji for Happy Hour

    Any time is a great time to visit House of Genji, but many of our loyal customers love stopping by for happy hour. Our Japanese restaurant has been a local favorite for more than 30 years, and during that time, our repeat customers have come to rely on our fabulous wait staff and bartenders to provide excellent service. We offer a full bar, including Japan’s signature drink, sake.

    The sake we serve is premium quality, which means that it’s best served slightly chilled, rather than warm. If you’re not feeling in the mood for sake, you can indulge in one of our many other alcoholic beverage selections. Our cocktails are particularly popular. Pair your beverage choice with a delicious appetizer, such as panko wings, deep fried calamari, sautéed scallops, or a freshly made sushi roll.
    House of Genji is Japanese dining at its finest, and our beverage menu can’t be beat! You can reach our Japanese steakhouse serving San Jose at (408) 453-8120 if you have any questions.

  • Planning an Autumn Trip to Japan? Don’t Miss These Festivals

    Japan is a country that loves its festivals. Visit this beautiful nation any time of year, and you’re sure to find a festival to celebrate. Japanese festivals are a fantastic opportunity to immerse yourself in the culture—from the traditional dress to traditional Japanese dining experiences, like teppanyaki.

    Kichijoji Autumn Festival
    Visiting Tokyo in early September? One of the first autumn festivals is the one held annually in Kichijoji, which is a neighborhood in Tokyo. This festival was first held in 1972 at a Shinto shrine, the Musashino Hachimangu. Teams of bearers travel the streets of Kichijoji carrying the mikoshi, which are ornate shrines. The music and dancing are irresistible for spectators and participants alike. There are always plenty of street vendors offering delicious food for hungry revelers.

    Sapporo Autumn Fest

    Bring a hearty appetite to the Sapporo Autumn Fest, held every year throughout most of September. Most of the festivities take place in Odori Park in Sapporo, which is the largest city on the island of Hokkaido. Booths showcase products from all over the prefecture, including agricultural and livestock products. Sample the wine and sake, order up some delicious ramen, and sample various delicacies prepared by some of the best chefs around.

    Kamiari Festival

    The Kamiari Festival is held during several days in late November. It’s held at the Izumo Grand Shrine. Adherents of the Shinto religion believe that all of the gods gather once per year at the Izumo Grand Shrine. People travel here from all over Japan each year in hopes that their prayers will be heard. Note that the dates vary from year to year, since this festival is scheduled by the old lunar calendar. However, it’s usually held in late November.

    Every day is a party here at House of Genji! Visit our Japanese steakhouse in San Jose to see our skillful teppanyaki chefs slice and dice your meal right before your eyes! You can reach us at (408) 453-8120 to check on our available reservations.

  • A Quick and Easy Way to Learn to Use Chopsticks

    Japanese food is delicious no matter how you eat it. But if you want an authentic experience, you should learn how to use chopsticks before your next dinner date at a Japanese restaurant. Watch this quick video for a helpful demonstration.

    You’ll see how to pinch the chopstick with your thumb and index finger. Slide the other chopstick through the space between your thumb and index finger, resting it at the base of your thumb. You’ll hold the second chopstick in place with your middle finger. Maneuver the chopsticks by moving the first chopstick with pressure from your index finger.

     You can practice your chopstick skills at House of Genji—a Japanese restaurant in San Jose. Call (408) 453-8120 or make your reservations online today!

  • Exploring the Roots of the Gyoza

    Gyoza are a popular appetizer and side order in Japanese restaurants. They are a type of Japanese pot sticker or dumpling. Traditionally, gyoza are made from very thin sheets of dough wrapped around fillings of vegetables or meats. Gyoza may be pan-fried, boiled, or deep-fried. Deep-fried gyoza are called age-gyoza. If you get the chance to visit a Japanese steakhouse, don’t miss the opportunity to order gyoza for a delicious and authentic Japanese dining experience!

    Chinese Origins of Gyoza

Although the gyoza is a Japanese food, it has its roots in China. It can be said to be a descendant of the jiaozi dumpling, which is a very popular snack in China. It’s thought that the jiaozi was created sometime after 150 AD by the same man who founded Chinese herbal medicine. This individual wanted to create a warm food that would help people get through the cold weather. Although the Chinese people enjoy jiaozi all year round, it’s a particularly popular menu item during the Chinese New Year.

Migration of Dumplings to Japan

It’s thought that dumplings were eaten in Japan at some point prior to 1700. However, they didn’t become popular until the 1940s. Wars have a way of exposing different cultures to each other, for better or worse, and this was the case with the second Sino-Japanese War. Japan was poor in natural resources, and northern China was very rich in natural resources. Japan invaded and occupied Manchuria in northern China with the goal of commandeering these natural resources. The Japanese ended up bringing home more than they’d bargained for, in the form of Chinese jiaozi. The humble dumpling became a favorite national food.

Modern Japanese Gyoza

Today, Japanese gyoza is a little different from Chinese jiaozi. One difference is that, in Japan, gyoza specialty shops often serve these pot stickers with white rice. Ramen shops serve them with ramen. Another difference is that dumplings in China are traditionally boiled, whereas the Japanese prefer to pan fry them.

House of Genji is famous for our delicious age-gyoza, served with soy and rice vinegar dipping sauce. If you’re in the mood for an incredible teppanyaki dining experience in San Jose, give us a call today at (408) 453-8120 to request reservations! Be sure to check out our cocktail lounge!

  • Take a Break from Your Day with a Teppanyaki Lunch

    Are you growing tired of the same old sandwich every day for lunch? Are you stuck in a rut of going to the same restaurants every day, or maybe even skipping lunch completely? Take a break in your day and get the boost of energy you need to take you through the rest of the day by opting for a teppanyaki lunch.

    Gathering your coworkers together to get to a Japanese restaurant for teppanyaki is a great way to get a breather from the demands of the day and to bond together outside of the office. A teppanyaki meal packed with protein and veggies will help you gear up for a strong finish when you get back to your desk.

    House of Genji offers an extensive menu of Japanese food options for lunch and dinner, including teppanyaki and hibachi. You can learn more about our lunch hours and menu by calling our Japanese restaurant in San Jose at (408) 453-8120.

  • Food Experiences to Try in Tokyo

    Tokyo is known for its huge array of dining options. Whatever your Japanese dining preferences, you will find them in the restaurants of Tokyo. This video explores five experiences you can’t miss if you are visiting Japan.

    Japanese steakhouses serve food in a way that is similar to teppanyaki dining, with chefs cooking in the center of the room. Among the many options in Japan, don’t miss the experience of dining on sushi in a conveyor belt restaurant.

    For Japanese dining closer to home, choose House of Genji. We offer a full menu of teppanyaki in San Jose as well as a variety of other Japanese food favorites. Find out more by calling (408) 453-8120.

  • Visiting Japan’s Onsen towns

    One thriving part of Japanese culture that is a must for visitors are onsen. Onsen are natural hot springs that are scattered throughout the country, thanks to Japan’s location in a volcanic region. Onsen each have different combinations of minerals that are believed to have medical benefits. You can visit indoor and outdoor onsen, as well as private, public, mixed gender, and separate gender. Many resort towns have sprung up around onsen to cater to visitors from around the world. Here is a look at some of the most popular locations.

    Kusatsu Onsen

    This resort is one of the most popular for people who want to visit onsen. Three hot springs feed water into the onsen at this resort, which is famed for using a traditional method of cooling the springs called yumomi. Yumomi involves using large paddles made of wood that fan the water to reduce the temperature. Visitors can enjoy a demonstration of yumomi being performed each day at the Netsu No Yu bathhouse.

    Kurokawa Onsen

    Kurokawa onsens in Kumamoto is the perfect choice for visitors in search of a more rustic experience. You won’t find high-rise hotels or flashing lights in this onsen town but rather a town that has carefully preserved an older way of life. There are three open-air baths as well as ample hiking experiences around the town, which sits between Mount Aso and the Kuju mountains.

    Dogo Onsen

    Dogo onsen, which can be found in Matsuyama, is the oldest in the country. The public bath opened in 1894 and is surrounded by a three-story, traditionally designed structure. Viewers of the film Spirited Away will recognize the building, as it was the inspiration for a bathhouse that appears in the animated feature.

    Although the onsen of Japan may be far away, Japanese food is not, thanks to House of Genji. Come experience teppanyaki and hibachi dining at our Japanese restaurant in San Jose. You can learn more about our menu by calling (408) 453-8120.

  • Exploring the Origins of Teriyaki

    In Japanese restaurants in the US, teriyaki is one of the most recognizable things on the menu for most people. In the US, teriyaki is usually thought of as a sauce, but in Japan, it is a style of cooking. The sauce may have originated not in Japan but in Hawaii, which is home to large ex-pat Japanese population. Here is a look at the history of teriyaki.

    Teriyaki as a Cooking Method

    In Japan, teriyaki as a style of cooking originated in the 17 th century. The “teri” part of the word loosely translates to “glazed,” while “yaki” means “broiled” or “grilled.” In Japan, the sauce that is used in meals that are prepared in teriyaki style is not necessarily like the teriyaki sauce used in Japanese restaurants in the US. Instead, when you see teriyaki on the menu in Japan, it is usually describing a glazed and grilled fish dish—usually salmon, tuna, or mackerel.

    Teriyaki Sauce in Hawaii

    The teriyaki sauce that is familiar in Japanese food in the US is believed to have been created by Japanese immigrants in Hawaii. The Japanese population there crafted a marinade that contained traditional flavors from Japan, like mirin, sake, and soy sauce, as well as ingredients that were indigenous to their new home in Hawaii, such as pineapple. Using this sauce as a marinade for grilled fish, chicken, and meat gradually increased in popularity and eventually become popular in the mainland in the 1960s, when there was an uptick in interest in Japanese cuisine.

    Teriyaki Sauce Today

    Today, teriyaki sauce typically contains some mixture of soy, mirin or sake, garlic, brown sugar, and pineapple juice. The sweet sauce can be used as a marinade, as a baste for cooking, or as a dipping sauce.

    You can enjoy teriyaki sauce along with a variety of Japanese food specialties at House of Genji, including traditional teppanyaki cooking. Find out more about our menu and hours by calling our Japanese restaurant in San Jose at (408) 453-8120.