Last Update
Jan 9th, 2015

Koizumi Japanese Buffet

5200 N University Drive
Fort Lauderdale FL, 33351
954 748-3788
Overall Rating
3.0
Food
Service
Ambiance
Value
Last Review
01/08/2015

Details

Hours: Lunch 7 days 11:30-3:30 Dinner: Sun-Thu 5pm-9:30pm Fri-Sat 5pm-10pm
Dress Code: Casual
Parking: Private Lot
CC: Yes
Outdoor: No
Reservations: No

Pros

Great Value
Well Maintained Buffet
Good Food

Cons

Indifferent Service
Mostly Rolls for Sushi

Critic's Review

I'd spotted this place when I hit the Pastrami Club the other day, and I wanted to try it. I'd never even heard of it before. I was expecting something pretty dumpy for this part of town, but it's actually quite nice inside. They have several dining sections and lots of good sized, comfortable booths.

I was seated close to the buffet, and a server came over to take my beverage order. Another place where I have a server to bring me a drink and take away my plates. Tea came without lemon; luckily they have lemons by the peel and eat shrimp on the buffet.

There's an island buffet in the middle of the room with salads and desserts, and then the typical cafeteria type buffet all along the wall with servers inside. All of these places have hibachis, but I hardly ever see anyone getting anything from the hibachi. None of these places make it clear what you can get or how it works, and it seems that most people are focused on the sushi.

I started out with the hot items; they have a small section of the buffet allocated to hot items. No dumplings; I didn't do any rice or lo mein. There wasn't much but it was all good quality. Chicken and Beef with Broccoli, garlic green beens, Chicken wings, coconut shrimp, vegetable tempura and "salmon". The salmon was badly overdone and the tempura has zero taste, but the meat was good and the vegetables weren't overcooked. Not a bad plate.

I'd also nabbed some hot and sour soup. Not a bad version.

I usually don't do salads at these places, because asian dressings generally don't appeal to me. But they had some "American" dressings here and some nice looking romaine lettuce and tomatoes, so I had a bit. I also grabbed a green-lipped mussel and some peel and eat shrimp and seafood salad.

All decent stuff. I also grabbed some egg drop soup:

I didn't like the egg drop; tasted like a cup of gloop. On to the Sushi section.

They had lots of rolls to choose from as well as nigiri. The fish was good quality; much better than my last "buffet" visit to SanTos in Boca. They had also just put some chicken teriyaki skewers and I grabbed one of those, but the chicken was tough. Chicken shouldn't be so chewy.

Time for some dessert. I wasn't really hungry, but I had to check it out.

The ice cream here was a mess; their scoops were broken (the scooper button was missing on one, and the other one was a bad, cheap scoop), and the ice cream was all messed up. The red bean, usually a favorite, looked like someone has spilled something into it, and the chocolate with littered with pieces of other flavors from people not cleaning the scoop in between. The dilemma of self-service. I managed to dig out some red bean, diet coffee and chocolate. I also grabbed a cream puff.

Good stuff. I just tasted it; the ice cream is the same at all of these places.

Service here wasn't very good. While they removed my plates each time I want back to the buffet, the pieces of paper remained. There was always some debris on the table; my straw wrapper was still on the table as I finished up. When I got the dessert, she dropped off the bill; I'd put my iced tea at the end of the table to get a refill, but she still didn't offer me a refill when she dropped off the bill.

Conclusion

The Koizumi buffet is one of the better Japanese Buffets I've been to. The $9.95 price is a great value.

Another place that could benefit from losing the servers and hiring a couple of bus boys. The service is a negative.

Comment Policy Add Comment

Next: The Brass Tap