In the mood for Chinese? Japanese? Burgers? If you answered “all three”, you’re in luck. Mukutan Ninja Charcoal Grill & Izakaya blends these into one culinary experience. I stopped by for lunch with a friend recently. Neither of us had been there before, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. The restaurant was empty when I got there (in fairness, it was just after 2pm, which is pretty late for lunch). Despite being in the middle of Wabash Landing, it had a quiet, secluded feel.
The menu is small and focused. We ordered the crispy gyoza (dumplings) for an appetizer. I was not prepared for how crispy they were — it was perfection. The filling had a good spice as well.
My friend and I both ordered burgers. They come with a side of miso soup, which is not a dish one typically gets with a burger. But it works well, and the soup was good. I ordered the Ninja Dry-Aged Beef Burger. Although the menu advertised it as spicy, I didn’t think it was at all. It has a wasabi mayo, but there was no real heat to it. And the shredded cabbage muted any spice that might have tried to sneak in. My sinuses really wanted this to be spicy, but apart from that disappointment, it was a delicious burger. The charcoal grill taste really came through.
My friend ordered the Truffle Dry-Aged Beef Burger. It, too, was good and juicy. The sauteed mushrooms and truffle mayo added great flavor. The burger was surprisingly filling, since it doesn’t seem like it’s that big.
One neat feature that I appreciated: when they bring the bill, there are check boxes for different common tip values (you can also choose your own). Not only does it calculate the tip, but it also shows the total. This makes it easier to pay when you’re sober. I imagine it’s even better after you’ve had a few rounds from the beer menu.
Kid Friendly: yes
Location: 305 E State St A, West Lafayette (map it)