Photo by Jennifer Fedrizzi Your new Cafe Hiro
I usually avoid using the too-easily misconstrued word to describe anything. But not since Kappo Sui in Costa Mesa have I encountered a more authentic Japanese restaurant in OC than Jinbei. No other word suits it. If John Wayne were a man's man, then Jinbei is a Japanese restaurant's Japanese restaurant, where everything served is exciting, intriguing and unfiltered. It's the kind of place you tell your friends about and hope they tell their friends about it, even while you wonder how it ended up here, tucked deep inside a treelined pocket of residential Irvine in one of Don Bren's most manicured neighborhood centers.