Anaba is where people from Japan come to eat in Knoxville, and there’s even a hand-lettered menu in Japanese for traditional dishes. Some of the most popular dishes include monkfish liver, large oysters, and sea cucumber. Noodles are another specialty, particularly the tonkotsu ramen—noodles in a white pork broth topped with pork, onions, green beans, and mushrooms. Closed from 2:30 pm after lunch until 5 pm for dinner.

As seen in YUMMM! the Metro Pulse Restaurant Guide:

On our shores, Japanese food, like so many imported cuisines, makes a number of concessions to the Western palate. Sometimes, restaurants use the food code word “fusion” to make sure diners know that their menu is safe for everyone—and, if sushi is on offer, the rolls are adequately laced with flavored mayonnaise, shrimp sauce, and/or all sorts of non-traditional ingredients. At Anaba you’ll certainly find these nods to the West—and they’re very tasty nods, at that—but you’ll also find a unique and deep regard for very traditional, very Japanese cuisine.

Even so, the menu provides many options for a wide variety of eaters. Entrees like chicken, shrimp, and oysters are made beautifully crispy by their coating of panko. The Hibachi Grill gets a good workout here, too. The usual suspects are available, but Anaba also uses the grill to create fun Hibachi entrees like Pork Kimchee and Cajun White Fish.

Still, the heart of the restaurant is solidly Japanese. And to that end, you’ll find traditional dishes made with ramen, udon, or soba noodles—stir fried or served in steaming and deeply flavored soups. Rice bowls include Oyako, a Japanese comfort food made with chicken, egg, and onion that’s good for what ails you, and curry bowls that are among the most popular dishes in Japan.

Naturally, Anaba features sushi, and there’s a great selection of rolls including comfortable favorites like the Philly, California, and Volcano. The adventurer will find some fun in trying the Double Dynamite, Firecracker, or Filet o Fish rolls. And, of course, there’s an ample selection of nigiri, sashimi, and traditional rolls if you seek less adorned food in the raw.

But if you’re after an authentic sushi experience, sit at the sushi bar and meet Chef Seisuke “Sei” Fukuoka. He’s a third-generation, Japanese-certified, and licensed sushi chef with a passion for tradition. Put yourself into his hands and let him guide you through Sushi Kaiseki. This traditional meal is offered in small courses designed to showcase the freshest and finest ingredients in a progression based on taste, texture, and appearance. It’s in the Kaiseki format that Chef Sei can really show off his craft and offer the best treatment of specialty and seasonal ingredients like monkfish liver (available in the winter), fresh sardine, and sea cucumber.

It’s true that you can find sushi all over the place these days—even in grocery stores—but too often you’ll miss care, craft, and quality that hundreds of years of tradition bring to Japanese cuisine. For that, go to Anaba.

Restaurant Details

Locally Owned Wifi Patio Live Music Accepts Reservations Party Room (20+)
Kids Menu Delivers Buffet Waterfront Vegetarian Dishes Vegan Dishes


Day Opens Closes
Sunday noon 9 p.m.
Monday 11 a.m. 10 p.m.
Tuesday 11 a.m. 10 p.m.
Wednesday 11 a.m. 10 p.m.
Thursday 11 a.m. 10 p.m.
Friday 11 a.m. 11 p.m.
Saturday noon 11 p.m.
Day Business Hours
Sunday noon
9 p.m.
Monday 11 a.m.
10 p.m.
Tuesday 11 a.m.
10 p.m.
Wednesday 11 a.m.
10 p.m.
Thursday 11 a.m.
10 p.m.
Friday 11 a.m.
11 p.m.
Saturday noon
11 p.m.

Upcoming Events for Anaba Japanese Cuisine

Comments » 6

davidchisholm writes:

How do I state this clearly and simply??? We received the worst service of any restaurant that we have ever visited - EVER! The management was unaccommodating and unresponsive, and the service was slow enough to allow us to take naps between courses. Nearly every dish came to the table at various times for each person. One dish took nearly 45 minutes to make an appearance - and it was a child's meal! We were told that we could not substitute rice for pasta, even though our request was because of a food allergy. Apparently the price of rice has recently skyrocketed! The Spanikopita was very dry, and tasted like it contained lemon grass (not a Greek ingredient that I remember). We asked for something else and were told that we would still be charged for it. We complained about this, and we were finally told that they would reduce the cost by 50%. When the check came, it was only reduced by 15% - on a $5 item! We finally asked for the manager, and we voiced all of our concerns. She looked surprised and said there was nothing she could do, and that the 15% reduction was correct! Heck – I could have reduced it that much by omitting the gratuity. There was no attempt to make us happy. We told the manager that we would never be back, and there was still no effort to appease us, or even the slightest hint of concern. When this place was owned by the Klonaris family, it was awesome. Don't waste your time or money!

plemium writes:

We have been dining here every week for almost a year now, and we love this place. You can have a Japanese dinner on the more traditional side or you can experiment with Greek dishes, which are also very tasty. The service here is wonderful and friendly. The sushi is always fresh - we love the yellowtail, tuna and Spanish Mackerel. Extensive choice of sake... try the Kurosawa - and for dessert, you must try their dessert fruit rolls... an aboluste treat!

CortneyTree writes:

My last trip to Kalamata (and I do mean last) marks the first time that I have WALKED OUT of a restaurant. I've enjoyed Kalamata for ages, even after the bizarre "fusion" of Japanese and Greek menus, ignoring its steady decline. When we entered on a Saturday for lunch around 1PM, we were greeted by a chalkboard still declaring "Sorry, we're closed!" and when we pointed this out to the manager, who let us stand there for what seemed like an eternity before finding someone to seat us, we were met with a humorless shrug. Should have known then. The table next to the door was occupied by a server rolling silverware (wasn't there a table in back more suitable for that?), and we were led from there to a booth on the front row. After waiting some time unattended, we were able to flag someone down who could bring us sushi menus (they were not given to us at seating) and eventually brought us our drinks (which were mixed up when delivered) Our server was not only completely unfamiliar with the menu (we had to point out every item we ordered to him) but also completely unfamiliar with any greek food at all. We ordered stuffed grape leaves and red pepper hummus as appetizers. The grape leaves arrived mushy and messy. They tasted stale and looked incredibly unappealing. We were told our dip would be coming out later, as they were out and had to make another batch. Running out of hummus in a greek restaurant? Not a good omen. After sitting with closed menus, ready to order, only to be passed by our server several times, we finally ordered our sushi rolls (again, having to point out each one to our server, who had to dig around his apron for several minutes before finding a suitable scrap of paper and pencil to take our order with). Nearly 30 minutes had passed before we were finally presented with our hummus--in the form of a runny and suspect-looking babaganoush. The combination of bad service, careless preparation of our food, and a general atmosphere of complete and TOTAL indifference was enough to kill it for us both, and after several attempts to get the attention of our server, ANY server, and finally the manager, my husband left the table. He then stood BESIDE THE MANAGER as he obliviously continued punching in things into the computer terminal, until finally acknowledging us and asking if everything was okay. My husband told him we'd been given the wrong dip, our grape leaves were terrible, that we no longer wanted our sushi, and could he please ring up our drinks and appetizer so that we could leave and eat elsewhere. The best thing I can say about the experience is that the manager had enough sense not to charge us for the grape leaves (which we *did* eat) and to apologize for the "bad food". As we left, we could hear him in the kitchen, shouting. We didn't stick around to hear more.

AphexMandelbrot writes:

Every time I go in, I sit at the sushi bar - and I am served very quickly.

They sometimes forget to bring you the sushi menu - even if you are at the bar. If you can not notice and recognize this before you have ordered your drink, then perhaps there is something deficient in your ability to notice the world around you in under five minutes. "But I'm the customer they shou-" - no. You're there to buy food and enjoy the atmosphere. If they excluded the sushi menu, be a big boy or girl and ask for it - quickly - so that you can order. I honestly can't believe someone made a negative comment about that.

"[...]tasted like it contained lemon grass (not a Greek ingredient that I remember)[...]" - It's comments like this that make me appreciate what it's like living in West Knoxville. I am surrounded by people who feel that because they hold a particular ideal, it must therefore be true for all applications in which they are presented with anything that resembles that ideal. Maybe that whole "fusion" thing includes throwing some lemon grass into it. Maybe they knocked over the box of lemon grass. Maybe you should learn to read where it said "lemon grass" on the menu. Because it says it. On the menu. I looked before I wrote this. Maybe you should have, too. Oh; who am I kidding - I live in West Knoxville - why should I expect that of you.

Their sushi is superb. The Volcano roll is on and off for me - there is some sort of lemon ingredient used that doesn't do it for me; too much of a contrast. Anything with lobster or crawfish salad on the outside tastes like you've eaten a big chunk of Happy. Or bitten off a bite of rainbow. Whichever analogy works best for you.

I don't really pay attention to the "Vibe". I know they have really horrid adult contemporary music streaming from an XM station, and that often I find myself trying to eat a little faster so that I won't have to listen to another love song featured in another worthless-Boomer 80's movie. I wish they would change the station more than anything, really. I'm not even looking to jam out to The Strokes while I decimate row after row of underwater delights - but anything is better than Phil Collins and Whitney Houston while I eat.

Value... I'm eating sushi in the middle of an economic recession, and probably washing it down with an imported beer - value never really entered into this. Actually, their non-special roll and special rolls are priced the same as most places. $3-5 for non-special; $6-10 for special rolls. That's about what you will pay elsewhere for sushi; so, value is par.

Eat the sushi.

Linsey writes:

i love this place! although always pack, this place has so many yummie foods! the sushi is excellent. i've been here several times and everytime, it never fails - leaving me happy. but service is kind of wishy washy, depending on who you get. the wait is horrible but worth it for the foods. this restaurant need to open to somewhere much more bigger!

volsrenee writes:

I too enjoy this restaurant. The service is usually slow - but I expect that when I go into the restaurant. I have never had bad food there, but it does tend to take a while. I usually have a Japanese dish for dinner, but we often order the Greek appetizers. I have continued to go back and will continue to until a really bad experience. Wonderful food!

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