Flint >Food & Dining > Sagano Japanese Bistro
2065 S Linden Rd, Flint, MI | Directions 4853243.000107 -83.772384
Horror Story – I am sad to report that me and my family had a very negative dining experience when interacting with this establishment.
Earlier in that evening we had contacted Sagano's in order to make dinner reservations. We were told that they are not able to take dinner reservations for parties smaller than 8. Which I guess I have no choice but to understand, as we were only a party of 7. We were told to stop on in around that time, and the wait would be no longer than 10 minutes or so.
Upon arrival, we were handed a pager and told that we would be paged when our table was ready, and it should be no longer than 30 minutes. This was the first red flag that caught our attention. In thier defense, I promised my friends and family, that this place had good reviews from what I had read, and would be worth the wait. So to pass the time we did a bit of shopping at a local department store just up the road. About 45 minutes later the paging unit started to vibrate.
Yay, time for dinner we thought.
Upon returning to the restaurant, the waitress attempted to sit 7 of us, at a table to be shared with other dinner patrons literally elbow to elbow, chairs touching. Not normaly an issue I suppose, outside of the fact that the table only had 6 available seats. This event had me asking myself at what age I learned to count to 10, and im thinking that it was at a very young age.
I excused myself to use the restroom. Upon exiting the gentlemens area, I found myself walking passed the managers office, with a very unstable waitress arguing with her manager. Something along the lines of the other party of 3, ended up being a party of 4, and how is this her fault.
While returning to my family I also noticed that there were several open seats on the other side of the establishment. They were not the seats in front of the cook and grill, but at this time I just wanted to get my already starving family fed. And these seats would do us just fine, as we didn't really did not need the show portion of this meal. Just a meal sometime before closing would be nice. I proceeded to ask the cashier, "are me and my family ok to have a seat and order some food on the other half of this place?, please? Her answer was yes.
I was thinking at the time, I was doing them a small favor and handling this issue for them. So we proceed to seat ourselves where I was told it would be ok. Now here is where the next problem started to arise.
After recieving our menu's we found that it was the sushi only side of the resaurant, and that the 2 people in our party who do not share our love for sushi, would not be allowed to order a steak dinner from our current seats. This was shortly followed with a very foul discussion in which the cashier denied telling me it would be ok to sit and order food from that half of the place. So in short, I was called a liar, in an effort to save her job I am assuming. Very, very foul if you ask me. She made it easy for me to decide on our leaving.
Great food, Great Sushi, and Hibatchi – Sagano is a great place to take a group of people. It's a very friendly environment and they offer both Hibatchi and sushi seating. The sushi is the best I've had in Flint and the Hibatchi dishes are definitely some of the best that my wife and I have had.
Half Good, Half Lame – I have been going to Sagano since before they decided to open the banal Benihana-esque steakhouse side of it. Some friends wanted to try the steakhouse so we went with them and it was nothing special. The fried rice was mediocre, the steak was a bit bland and nothing really stood out. I have been to quite a lot of these types of Japanese steakhouses and they are all about the same. Flashy grill chef flipping food around, making onion volcanoes to wow the table. Cute, but very trite. The real star of Sagano is the sushi bistro on the oher side of the lobby. The sushi is wonderful and they even serve my favorite, ama ebi (complete with the fried shrimp head!). They have a decent sake selection, wonderful gyoza, udon, dynamite, tempura and the ginger carrot dressing on the house salad is great. The steakhouse has taken a lot of the intimacy away from the bistro on the weekends due to overflowing crowds so go during the week and avoid them unless you like being around screaming kids and the "aint done did" clan.
Flints Only Japanese Restaurant and Steak house – Sagano is Great. Me and My wife go there 2~3 times a month. They have several Hibachi Tables and several tempiyaki chefs. If you go there, you must get the fried tempura Ice cream. There is nothing better. Wait times can vary. On the weekends you may have to wait up to 30 minutes for a table. However you can usually get in without a problem if you come a little early. All the waitrsses are great. If you can, Get Rie. Just stay away from the head waitress. She is not that customer freindly.
P.S. The sushi is flown in every day except the weekends.
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