About Benihana - San Diego

Welcome to Benihana and a dining experience unlike any other! Our guests are seated at communal tables in groups, where your personal chef will perform the ancient art of Teppanyaki. Watch as we slice and dice, preparing a meal that will dazzle your eyes as well taste buds, whether you choose mouth-watering steak, tender chicken or succulent seafood. You can also enjoy sushi prepared by a talented sushi chef and indulge in a specialty cocktail. Benihana’s famous showman chefs are legendary in San Diego. The restaurant is located near hotel row off the 8 Freeway, exit Mission Center Drive. Visit our large sushi bar and lounge for Happy Hour each Monday through Friday from 4-7 p.m. with great specials starting at just $3.00. Benihana is near Mission Bay, SeaWorld, Balboa Park and the San Diego Zoo.

477 Camino del Rio S
San Diego, CA 92108
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Japanese, Sushi, Steakhouse

Hours of Operation:
LUNCH:
Monday - Sunday: 11:00 am - 3:00 pm

DINNER:
Monday - Thursday: 3:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Friday - Saturday: 3:00 pm - 11:00 pm
Sunday: 3:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Cross Street:
8 FWY and 163 FWY

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(619) 298-4666

Website:
http://www.benihana.com/locations/sandiego-ca-sd

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Benihana - San Diego Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.5

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.4

ambience

4.4

value

4.2

noise

Moderate

94% would recommend it to a friend

Special Occasion (123)
Good for Birthdays (123)
Fun (97)
See All
Good for Groups (93)
Kid-friendly (75)
Good for Anniversaries (70)
Good for a Date (66)
Creative Cuisine (49)
Worth the Drive (48)
Casual (45)
Family Style (42)
Authentic (37)
Great for Lunch (36)
People Watching (34)
Sunday Lunch (28)
Romantic (22)
Fit for Foodies (22)
Open Kitchen (21)
Happy Hour (21)
Hot Spot (20)
Comfort Food (20)
Business Meals (20)
Tasting Menu (19)
Healthy (16)
Handcrafted Cocktails (15)
Neighborhood Gem (13)
Great for Brunch (12)
Bar Seating (11)
Pre/post Theatre (9)
Spicy (8)
Late-night Find (8)
Vibrant Bar Scene (7)
Local Ingredients (7)
Cozy (7)
Disabled Access (6)
Seasonal (6)
Notable Wine List (6)
Great Beer (5)
Modern Decor (5)
Good Vegetarian Options (5)
Tapas (4)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Outstanding Value (4)
Quiet Conversation (4)
Private Room (3)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Historic (3)
Vegan (2)
Afternoon Tea (2)
Scenic View (2)
Live Music (2)
Great for Outdoor Dining (2)
Afternoon Coffee (2)
Quick Bite (2)
Waterfront (1)
Molecular Gastronomy (1)
Fireplace (1)
Live Sports (1)
Wood Oven (1)
Sort By:
S
1925 reviews
Loading Reviews ...

 
 (Orange County)·Dined 2 days ago

Went for a birthday dinner. The food was great. Service was prompt but the chef didn't give much of a show.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 2 days ago

The ambiance and food is great. The only issue is that we ended up with some hair in our food. We addressed it with the server but they didn't even offer another soup. For being a nice restaurant we were not that pleased.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service2
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 4 days ago

We picked Benihana because it was one of the only hibachi grill names i was familiar with. The food was good and so was the service but the prices were crazy! I have been to a few other grills that give you a lot more food for a cheaper price. But I guess you are paying for the name.
Overall good but just over priced.

Tags: Romantic, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value2

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 4 days ago

We had an exceptional time on this visit. Food was incredible, and ambience great dispite it being Father's day.

Tags: Authentic, People Watching, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 4 days ago

Great as always. Kids love to go there. reservations were on time

Tags: Good for a Date, Great for Lunch, Handcrafted Cocktails, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 4 days ago

The show is what you pay for. Food is flavorless and over priced. They push the chicken fried rice, yet fail to mention that it's S4.10 additional per small bowl. The food lacks flavor and the bill for a party of 4 was $268 with one beer ordered. The rest drank soda or water.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 4 days ago

Everything was great, good food and chef, but the exhaust blower wasn't working and my family complained about that since they had asthma and the smoke was blowing in their direction, on top of that i have a 3month old baby and luckily she wasnt affected by since she was as far away as possible. Nothing was done since it was broken. Other than that great place.

Tags: Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 4 days ago

Enjoyed Father's Day lunch, chef was great and the service excellent.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Special Occasion, Sunday Lunch, Great for Brunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 5 days ago

Terrific time. Hector was our chef. He was very funny, entertaining, and personable. Loved it! The food was awesome!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 5 days ago

Yuki was amazing!! I appreciate her attentiveness to the whole party. She was warm and friendly and made my whole family very happy. We were lucky to have been at her table before.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Sunday Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 5 days ago

went during lunch and lunch menu was not available had to go with the holiday menu we where not notified of it until we where seated. Would have been nice to know ahead of time.

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value2

 
 (Hawaii)·Dined 5 days ago

Benihana historically is a good brand, but our family was highly disappointed with the personality (or lack there of) out chef, Fausto. Similarly, his art form was limited compared to the adjacent chef where I had a good vantage point on the end seat. This is why to eat there. Unfortunately, chef choice is not possible. Too bad because we were there for a special occasion.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value1

 
 (Los Angeles)·Dined 6 days ago

Awesome chef

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 7 days ago

Benihana is always amazing. Ricky and Manny are excellent chefs that pay attention to detail. The garlic butter is a must on everything.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Kid-friendly, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined 7 days ago

The attitude of the reception employees was not pleasant. We arrived and told them we have a reservation, they didn't say anything, just handed us a pager. When the pager went off the asked us to line up in front of the wine cellar/closet. Then a lady escorted us (without knowing where to go) walking through tables, the place was super dirty, the floor was full of food and crumbs. We were seated at the hibachi grill, the menus were so dirty and sticky, we had to separate the pages and tear them to be able to read. The food was below average. We asked for another glass of wine that never came. It was over priced for the quality of food, service, ambiance (very loud) and hygiene.
Will never go back

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience1
service4
value1

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 7 days ago

We always go here on our birthdays with the Chef's Table birthday coupon. We always end up spending at least the price of 2 meals anyway, but the food is good and it's always fun!

Tags: Kid-friendly, Fun, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined 7 days ago

I haven't been to Benihanas in over 15 years. Not much has changed however I noticed the chefs are no longer Japanese? It was super loud but also very entertaining. The food is always delicious and it's quite interesting to watch all of the meals being cooked before your eyes. The bar area was quiet and I liked the modern Japanese decor. I hear you can get a free birthday dinner. That's pretty cool.

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 15, 2017

Andres, our server, was very attentive and polite. He was always around when we needed him.
Max, our chef, was exceptional in that he let his cooking entertained us with not a lot of talking in his part. This allowed us to converse with each other and enjoyed one another's company.
Is it possible to request for a server and chef when making a reservation?

Tags: Worth the Drive, Good for Groups, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 15, 2017

I will always recommend Benihana for a great family night. The chef's are always engaging and create a fun ambiance with their cheffery skills on the hibachi grill. Their menu offers items from the sushi bar or made in front of you at the hibachi grill. My son enjoys the smoothies offered and the California roll from the sushi grill. To my surprise, his California roll included the starter soup and salad, hibachi fried rice, and hibachi grilled corn with butter! Great value for a kids meal.

Tags: Fun, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Kid-friendly
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 13, 2017

It was as I expected it to be. Noisy, other guests at the table ignoring other guests. Our waitress wasn't super attentive like the guy at the other two tables was. He seemed to be awesome whereas we were stuck with boring. Same for the cook, ours seemed mediocre whereas another was spot on. Still a great experience but wait staff brings it to exceptional

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Sunday Lunch, Romantic, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience5
service2
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 11, 2017

Took the family here for an early dinner. Pricy but very fun environment and amazing food. Everyone had a ball

Tags: Authentic, Kid-friendly, Great for Lunch, Fun, Comfort Food, Pre/post Theatre, Business Meals, Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Sunday Lunch, Good for a Date, Happy Hour, Neighborhood Gem, Great for Brunch, Casual, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Vegan, Good Vegetarian Options, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 11, 2017

Our chef, Armando, was very animated. We took a family picture with him. He was great! Food was delicious.

Tags: Special Occasion, Casual, Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 10, 2017

The food is always good. The chef's attitude made the experience even better.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Romantic, Gluten Free Options, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 10, 2017

I brought my family to celebrate my daughter's high school graduation and my son's graduation from 8th grade. The server and chef provided excellent service and were very accommodating to my wheat and shellfish allergies.

At the opposite end of the spectrum was the manager. The server indicated that the manager would not allow her to substitute anything, including edamame, except for a double serving of salad for the shrimp and soup (which had wheat - soy sauce - in it). She was very pleasant and offered me the opportunity to discuss the situation with the manager and I accepted that offer. When the manager arrived at our group table he was abrupt and coldly unaccommodating. Being unsatisfied with his response and not wanting put a pall on our celebration, I excused myself and found the manager in the outer area and restated my allergy situation and disappointment with his initial substitution offer. The manager was consistent in his cold response and his la k of customer care was surprising.

I ended up ordering edamame a la carte and our bill was over $225 before tip. I don't see the logic in not being able to substitute edamame for shrimp and soup...

The manager's prattish behavior left me cold and I expected better. Fortunately, the servers and chef made the celebration dinner fun for the entire family.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 10, 2017

Excellent food and ambiance. Absolutely love loved the food and cannot wait to go again

Tags: Worth the Drive, Kid-friendly, Authentic, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 9, 2017

I have been several times and have been very impressed by our cook. This time I took some of my young students who had never been, expecting a cook of similar flair from past times. Not so. He was ok, but not exceptional like the others. The food was great, but the theatrical experience was not up to par. I'll definitely go back, however.

Tags: Great for Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 9, 2017

Went for my birthday. Was a very fun and entertaining experience.

Tags: People Watching, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Late-night Find
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service4
value3

vip
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 9, 2017

This was the worst visit to Benihana ever. We visit this restaurant 4-5 times a year and we are very familiar with the timeframe that is involved with dining here and the quality of food. Last night we were there as a part of six for a birthday dinner and the $300 bill was not worth it. We had a new Teppan chef by he name of Sam and the experience was terrible. A 1.5 hour (or so) turned into a 3 hour dinner and not by choice. Sam was bet slow, committed many errors with the orders in our part and the other party of 2 that was also seated at our table. It was a terrible birthday dinner experience and no one enjoyed themselves or the food like we normally do when we visit. Everyone received their entrees with long period of time in between, he didn't make enough Fried rice for the entire table, he forgot sauces and ingredients and we had to remind him to add, etc. Very disappointing. Sam is not ready for his own tables. We felt as if our $300 bill was not worth it at all and we could of had a much more enjoyable dinner elsewhere. We chose Benihana because we love the food and ambiance and we received nothing more than 1 star service Very disappointed.

Tags: Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service1
value1

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 4, 2017

The waitress was pretty rude and unattentive, especially considering how slow they were compared to usual. I had to ask for everything 3 x before getting it, despite her making multiple trips back to the table for other guests. Food was ok, but the shrimp was overcooked. Definitely not worth the wait or hassle. The knock off tepan are not much worst, so save your time & money & go to one of those. The service is better.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service3

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 4, 2017

I usually go to shogun but decided to go here instead for before prom. It seems to be a tad more expensive and seemed like you got a bit less to eat. Though i think the food quality was better. Not a good place for a quiet date but definitely good for a night out with friend.

Tags: People Watching
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on June 3, 2017

I had a great time, good food and service was great I will be back very soon...thanks for the best dinner party for my daughter

Tags: Happy Hour, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 3, 2017

First time visiting but will gladly return, worth the 2 hour drive. Great service awesome experience with our professional chef, delicious food.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 3, 2017

Had to wait an hour until our server arrived. He was great but waiting that long in a loud place put me on edge and made the experience worse than it should have been.

Tags: Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience1
service3
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 3, 2017

Love everything about Benihana's! My husband enjoyed his birthday celebration!

Tags: Comfort Food, Tasting Menu, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 2, 2017

Love the experience

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 2, 2017

First i didn't get the birthday cert. as it said i should have gotten and i didn't. That didn't stop us for going as we were celebrating our daughter graduation. Service was not as great as it has been in the past. Not sure if it was an off night for the chef or what. When he did the shrimp in the hat and pocket he flung one at our son at first and then our daughter not sure if that is something new, however inappropriate. The waiter himself was great, it was the chef himself. A little disappointing and probably won't come back for some time.

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on June 1, 2017

Shout out to our server and chef. Exceptional/phenomenal service.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Creative Cuisine, Vibrant Bar Scene, Afternoon Coffee, Great Beer, People Watching, Authentic, Late-night Find, Kid-friendly, Bar Seating, Fun, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on May 30, 2017

First time going here, we had the birthday certificate for my birthday, and we had such a great time! We were seated with two other groups, and our chef was awesome and all the food was really good. It was really neat to see everything cooked in front of us, they really made me feel special since we were celebrating for my birthday, and kept saying Happy Birthday to me. It was a unique, fun time.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Casual, Fun, Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine, Hot Spot, Authentic, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on May 29, 2017

The food was amazing!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on May 28, 2017

Our chef Ray was amazing! Definitely recommend this location!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Report this review as inappropriate?

If you believe this review should be removed from OpenTable, please let us know and someone will investigate.