100 Favorite Dishes: Bento Box at Obento-Ya


As a countdown to the Best of the Twin Cities 2010, coming this spring, Hot Dish is serving up a hundred of our favorite local dishes. Send your own nominations to [email protected]

Number 96: Bento Box at Obento-Ya Looking for a square meal? The Bento Boxes at Obento-Ya are your best bet yet. This one is shrimp and vegetable tempura, but you can also order them with sushi, robata (grilled skewered meat and veggies), or fish fillets. All of them come with a green salad, sticky rice, and a bunch of perky little garnishes--sweet sponges of scrambled egg, a sautee of carrot and burdock root, and those addictive purple pickles. My favorite compartment might be the one with a scoop of Japanese potato salad, which is creamy as the usual stuff, but spiked with crunchy bits of cucumber and apple. Ordering a bento is like getting a bite off every dish in the restaurant, served in a cute little box. And it sure beats the pants off an American TV dinner.

Hungry for more? The dishes in our countdown thus far are linked below:

No. 100: Volcano Salad at Tiger Sushi No. 99 Eclair at Butter No. 98 Moussaka at Gardens of Salonica No. 97 "Flappers" at Colossal Cafe