My wife and I went to Kenichi this weekend for her birthday. Kenichi is number four in a US chain of Japanese restaurants. This doesn't surprise me since nothing in Victory Park is an original except the American Airlines Center. Moving on...
The food was good. The service was good. The atmosphere was good. I think the real problem with the circa $150 tab for two was that in Dallas, this doesn't stand out. There are a number of established Japanese restaurants in the area that provide a hip atmosphere, the freshest fish, and creative twists on traditional cuisine.
Granted, I should go back and try more of the cooked menu since we stuck mostly to the sushi. My wife did rave about the Godzilla roll, what I remember to be a Caterpillar Roll with strawberries on top, but it didn't really hit me. And the place was hopping with younger energy. As we were leaving, we passed a crowd of seemingly single folk in the late-20's or early-30's bracket drinking by the bar. If I were single and drove a Porsche too, then I would totally be joining them.
Finally, the valet was subsidized by the restaurant at $5, a fair price considering folks heading to shows down there would pay upwards of $15 for parking. There's also the option of taking the special-event line to Victory Station, but you have to plan your return trip with the exodus of the evening's major event. But it won't be long until 2009 when the station is a permanent stop on the future Green and Orange Lines.
Follow-up: Kenichi called the following week to make sure we enjoyed our dinner. Service++.