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Eat Local: Hana Japanese Restaurant

Amazing Japanese fare — some say it's the best in Sonoma County.

This wonderful Japanese eatery is tucked away in the Doubletree Plaza near the old Latitude, but the local spot should not be missed — some locals even say it's the best in Sonoma County.

Hana's unassuming exterior and darkened windows open to a dining room elegantly lit, with plenty of seating for a couple or a large group. Restaurant features include a low-slung sushi bar, which can accomodate up to eight people. Behind the counter, patrons witness chefs prepare fresh sushi and sashimi, as well as new small plates of carpaccio and Hawaiian Ahi Poke.

The staff is excellent and very polite. At dinner recently, I was greeted at the door by local owner and Chef, Ken Tominaga. Ken grew up in Sonoma County. After college and working for his family, he went back to Tokyo and attended cooking school. He opened Hana Japanese Restaurant in 1980 and hasn't looked back since.

After being seated I was given a crash course in sushi. The menu at Hana is very extensive. Quite a few things looked incredible and of course an explanation of how they were made accompanied the description. The lunch menu offers choices for both vegetarian choices and non. We loved the tempura ($12), Jidori Katsu (breaded, fried organic chicken cutlets for $13), the miso-glazed black cod ($18) and the spider roll (with softshell crab and tobiko).

The menu also offers bento boxes and a variety of noodle and rice dishes.

During dinner, the dining room can fill up later, so we recommend going around 6 p.m. There's a seared salmon, scallop, prawn and mussel dish served in butter jus — mouthwatering and big enough to share ($22). The Black Angus steak )$28) was cooked to perfection and we loved the grilled Fulton Valley chicken with teriyaki glaze )$26). Don't miss Ken's roll (spicy tuna on prawn tempura with avocado for $13).

Most dishes come with edamame or miso soup, and there's a full list of small plates for starters.

This is the perfect place to come if you can't decide on what you're in the mood for — the staff are accomodating and helpful, there is a wide selection outside typical Japanese fare and you can grab a quick bite or enjoy a lengthy dinner. Great date spot! The prices were very reasonable considering how wonderful the food and staff was.

Hana offers a full list of nigori and filtered sakes, as well as some served hot. Don't be afraid to try something new; your server is eager to help. There's also a full wine list of mostly northern California vintages. The beer selection is mostly Japanese — yum!

Hana Japanese is located at 101 Golf Course Drive, Rohnert Park. Hours: For Lunch open Monday - Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. For Dinner open Sunday - Thursday 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. & Friday & Saturday 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Find the full menu here.

Rohnert Park Patch is focused on being a central point of information for our local community. So with that in mind we are diving into some of the local restaurants to provide insight and information for those who have yet to experience it themselves. Want us to review somewhere? Drop a note to the writer or tell us in the comments!

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