I went for a farewell dinner for a friend leaving for Japan and a large group of us gathered at Typhoon in their big tatami room downstairs. I was a bit puzzled why Typhoon was chosen, but I have to admit, it wasn't as terrible as I've come to expect it to be. The last time I was there, I had a pretty sub-par meal, and previous to that, well, it was unremarkable, so it's been stricken from my list ever since. There must have been about 15 of us there that night, so I got a chance to sample a bunch of items from their menu. While the majority of the items were in that unremarkable range, there were a few standouts. The fried monkfish with ponzu is quite good, if pretty standard (i.e., hard to mess up), but a good frying job. Going along with the frying, the miso katsu and the korokke (croquette) were also very good. The miso katsu is a standard fried pork cutlet, but stuffed with cheese and spinach (I think), and topped with a dark, sweet miso sauce. This is the same miso sauce that comes atop the nasu gengaku (grilled eggplant), which was pretty good too. The korokke were the size of baseballs, and had a good potato/meat ratio, and again, well fried. Also of note was the sawara-tataki, slightly seared mackerel-like fish (I forget what sawara is in English) in a ponzu sauce. The goma-ae (spinach with sesame sauce) was kind of interesting, with the sesame sauce being very thick and kind of dry. I liked it a lot. Almost like a spinach halvah, if you will. Some of the beef dishes were pretty well received, like the kalbi, or the gyu-tataki (seared rare beef), and the ishiyaki steak. For most everything else I've heard comments like, "I like my version of this better," but for the food savvy among us who expected worse, were pleasantly surprised. I'm not sure I would hurry back to Typhoon, but I guess I don't have to expect a total disaster either. I guess this is a step in the right direction to figuring the best ordering strategy.