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With the Fullerton branch debut of the popular Old Town Tustin haunt, the Honda-Ya chain finally has a space grand enough to match the scale and scope of the menu. Where the original Tustin location is a narrow squiggle of a restaurant, the Fullerton Honda-Ya, claimed from an abandoned Sizzler on Yorba Linda Blvd, is a rat maze of booths in a building with the square footage of a high school gymnasium. Like the original, there’s a tatami room, where customers who chose to can sit cross-legged in an elevated, reed-matted vestibule where no shoes are allowed. Here it’s three times the size. But same as at the Tustin restaurant, you will lose the feeling in your legs somewhere around minute six. You realize there as you do here that your couch-potato limbs aren’t suited for this traditional Japanese way of sitting. But do it anyway. There’s nothing like channeling your inner Richard Chamberlain in Shogun as you order the food and sake while lounging like a victorious samurai warrior.
The first Disneyland fans to walk into Disney World when it opened in 1971 might have had the same feeling I had eating at the new Honda-Ya in Fullerton: happy that something as great as the original has been duplicated, that more people can... More »
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