I tried out this place that is on top of the Bellevue Galleria (beyond the movie theater) this weekend. It's called Yama Japanese Cuisine. We popped in, just craving some sushi but left very pleased with the feast we found.
The cooked foods do have a fusion element to them, but everything was extremely well executed. We looked to our waiter for suggestions, and ended up trying the "award winning" (I'm not sure which awards) baby back ribs as an appetizer. They were subtley sweet and tangy, with a touch of peppercorn flavoring. As my husband said, "I could eat these all day". For entrees, we shared a sashimi platter and the steak tenderloin.
The sashimi was beautifully displayed, the cuts of fish were very generous, and the fish was as fresh as I've had. The tenderloin was just that, exceedingly tender. It was simply served atop a bed of sliced potatoes, spinach and sliced mushrooms adorned with a light cheese/cream sauce that was divine.
We finished up the meal with their dessert bento box. A trio of desserts that included an almond bread pudding, green tea tiramisu and molten chocolate cake.
Ambiance is interesting yet elegant, in spite of the odd location. Definitely more of a contemporary take on Japanese--not trying to be traditional with shoji screens and all that. Although we did see a few tatami rooms available for larger groups. Service was attentive but not overbearing.
Only change I'd make is to serve sushi rice with the sashimi platter. And maybe turn this place into a lounge later in the evening...it could easily have that club ambiance with a little less lighting and a DJ.
I consider this place my hot new find in Bellevue. And, I share it with you hounders, with the understanding that you'll help keep my secret!