I got to know Japanese food intimately at Yoko, a long, thin strip of a restaurant lined with pleather-covered booths, smoked mirrors, and a sushi bar backed by oversized photos of bamboo. The place, always filled with regulars, was situated between Babies R Us and the Spy Store off Okeechobee Boulevard in West Palm Beach. It had a weirdly grand automatic door that slid open as you approached, like the entrance to Ali Baba's cave. Yoko's menu wasn't terribly exotic, although it did serve burdock root and bowls of vinegared rice topped with raw fish. I liked the place because the owner, Yoko, was an elegant throwback, as genteel as a princess in her silk kimonos, pale makeup smoothed over softly wrinkled cheeks. Yoko performed karaoke on Friday nights, singing Japanese pop tunes. Her frail, elderly husband hovered over his sushi boats behind the bar, quick... More >>>