Dinner on Monday night was at Gyoro-Gyoro, one of the spots open a little later.
It offers a full menu of Japanese small plates, yakitori and a sushi bar.
First up, spicy Hokkaido scallop sushi. Too goopy with sriracha mayo for me, but it did taste good with chunks of candy-sweet scallop. Rice was a little too wet.
Salmon skin salad was wonderful. Mixed baby greens, avocado and tomatoes topped with crispy, grilled salmon skin. The citrus and soy sauce based dressing was served on the side.
Agedashi tofu was pretty good. Custard-y tofu was fresher and more tender than I expected to find in the desert. Dashi was a bit simple, but I liked the addition of the shishito pepper and a piece of tempura-fried eggplant.
Before ordering the chicken skin skewer, I asked if it was the crispy style. Indeed it was, and delicious with the simple salt seasoning. For the pork belly, I asked for sauce, and that turned out to be overkill with a sticky sauce, mayo, scallions and seaweed. The hand with grilling is good here, turning out smoky bits while retaining the natural juices.
Brussels sprouts sauteed in butter was a very nice dish too. Cooked through but still on the crunchy side, these were topping with Korean red chile threads and crispy fried garlic.
Our favorite dish was the Softshell crab claypot rice. The server cautioned that it would take 40 minutes to cook, and that turned out to be perfectly in synch to appear at the table seconds after the previous dish was served. Our waiter chopped up the whole fried crab that was resting on the surface and blended it with the pearly, firm rice, lotus root and enoki mushrooms in the blazing hot pot. He asked we wanted him to serve us and I declined, wanting to give the heat of the pot more time to build the rice crust. This was far and away our favorite dish for the combination of crisp and chewy textures, subtle flavor of the crab permeating the rice, and the toasty rice.
Gyoro-Gyoro also has outdoor seating on streetside. We've heard that Thursday karaoke night is popular here.
105 S Palm Canyon Dr
Palm Springs, CA 92262
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