San Francisco: Hokkaido Seafood Buffet

by gigi on December 17, 2007

We were back in San Francisco so NTR and UK took me to Hokkaido Seafood Buffet. Although most of the food here is seafood (obviously!), they also had some other non-seafood items as well. Most of the food offered here is Asian style.

hokkaido seafood buffet

After we settled in at our table, we started digging in at the various stations. I was pretty amazed by the selection of food and the sheer abundance of it all. I gravitated toward the mound of fresh Alaskan king crab, mussels, clams, and shrimp. It was all so tasty and you also had a selection of cocktail sauce, lemons, and ponzu sauce to add to your seafood.

hokkaido seafood buffet

I tried some clam soup, which was served in a small bowl. I didn’t like the taste of the broth very much, so I decided to try the clam meat instead. This didn’t taste much better though…and I later learned that it was the soup that everyone liked — not the clam meat itself. :) Oops.

hokkaido seafood buffet

The coconut shrimp was quite good although I had to scrape off some of the mayo. I also couldn’t really taste the coconut.

hokkaido seafood buffet

The shrimp were a fair size and were nice and crunchy.

hokkaido seafood buffet

I am a huge fan of fresh oysters and of course I had to load my plate with some of these. The ponzu sauce went really well with the oysters.

hokkaido seafood buffet

More oysters…yum!

hokkaido seafood buffet

There was also a selection of various sushi and sashimi. One that I liked was a tempura sushi, which was lightly fried with tempura batter. Although the sashimi was definitely not as good as what we ate at Taiko, it was quite good for a buffet. The tuna was also a pinker colour than what I was used to in Vancouver.

hokkaido seafood buffet

They also had Chinese-style crabs which was steamed and then stir-fried in a clear broth. The pieces of crab were quite big and tasty. :)

hokkaido seafood buffet

The baked scallop with cheese was a bit rich for my taste but it was interesting to see that it was baked right in the shell.

hokkaido seafood buffet

The shark fin soup was made with imitation shark fin, but you couldn’t even tell the difference. The soup had a lighter taste compared to what I was used to in most restaurants. NTR enjoyed this quite a bit.

hokkaido seafood buffet

When you are seated at your table, each person is given a ticket for one half a lobster baked in a cheese sauce. To claim it, you just head over to the lobster station and the server there will put one on your plate. The lobster itself was quite good although I wasn’t too crazy about the cheese sauce.

You could also construct some Peking duck using the mini buns provided and the generous pieces of duck. I didn’t have any of this but both NTR and UK enjoyed it. I was starting to get quite full by this point. :)

hokkaido seafood buffet

There were also hand cones that were made fresh so the seaweed was still crunchy.

hokkaido seafood buffet

The black bean clams had a nice flavour and quite tasty. There were also frog legs, which I didn’t try. NTR noted that it was a bit too lean for her taste.

hokkaido seafood buffet

The black bean oysters were very tasty. I could tell they were quite fresh and were just cooked and had a nice consistency. There was also some dim sum (bottom of the picture below) but the selection was small and most of the items were oversteamed.

hokkaido seafood buffet

Now onto the fruits and veggies. I needed to eat some veggies after all this seafood so I scooped some edamame onto my plate. I also had some watermelon, but the strawberries were definitely the better tasting of the two. They were sweet and ripe…I even went back for seconds!

hokkaido seafood buffet

Now it was dessert time. Most of the desserts were pretty standard but there was a good selection of both Western and Asian desserts.

hokkaido seafood buffet

I found that the Asian desserts looked better than they tasted. I think they had been sitting on the plates for a while so they may have tasted better when they were fresh.

hokkaido seafood buffet

I had quite a good time here. I would say that the seafood items are definitely the specialty. If I were to come back, I would load up on the seafood, especially the cold items, and pass on the desserts. We went on a weekend for lunch so it worked out to about $22/person. Weekday lunches are a great deal at about $12/person.

Details:
2200 Bridgepointe Pkwy, San Mateo, CA
Tel: 650-212-2688

Summary:
Food: [rating:3]
Service: [rating:3]
Price: $$

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