In Japanese, the word kisso means “many good things converging to a center,” or words to that effect. At the Westin Grand Hotel’s Kisso Japanese restaurant there are indeed many good things centered within. Whether you’re an expert or novice when it come to Japanese food, the numerous facets of this “full service” restaurant will probably satisfy your needs. The term “full service” is used to denote the fact that Kisso offers diners a wide variety of Japanese cooking styles and the special facilities needed to serve the food in the most authentic way. The restaurant serves sushi and sashimi and has a separate sushi bar area and serves teppanyaki in a separate area equipped with the grill/ tables used in its preparation. Kisso also boasts of having eight private tatami rooms which provide guests with the traditional Japanese seating. And, of course, there is the main dining room where any of the menu can be ordered and where our recent visit took place. The bamboo accents and light green walls were set off by the simple, black lacquer furniture and gave the room an unprepossessing feel. The large menu contains the above mentioned specialties and quite a number of other items as well. Several specials are worth mentioning at the outset. One is the weekend family buffet lunch and includes sushi, teppanyaki, tempura and sukiyaki for baht 380++ for adults and 250++ for children. Another is the set lunch menu which offers 17 different lunches from 170-440++, each one comprised of a number of courses. You can get main courses of sashimi, sushi, sukiyaki, seafood and teppanyaki with appetizers, soups side dishes and desserts included. And, chef Mr. Ikeda has his own page of the menu devoted to his personal specialties which ran a very wide gamut and contained some of the more interesting items on the entire menu. We ultimately tried three of these items, the Kobe beef sashimi, the grilled dried hokkei fish and the deep-fried stuffed crab. Other items included vinegared crab, Phuket lobster simmered in sake, raw tuna with grated Japanese yam and salted entrails of sea squirt. Having given up sea squirt for the month of June, we were forced to pass over this dish, but the ones we did try from this page were quite good and unique to our experience. Especially interesting was the Kobe beef sashimi. Having eaten beef carpaccio many times before, we were curious about its Japanese cousin. It was served very thinly sliced, as is carpaccio and with a small mound of fresh garlic and a dipping sauce. The meat was more marbled than the tenderloin used to make carpaccio and was extremely tender and tasty. The stuffed crab was also good, the meat being scooped out of the shell, added to the stuffing and then replaced and served in the shell with a crumb topping. By the time the hokkei fish arrived so much other food had been consumed that only a small portion of it was eaten, but it was flavourful if a bit dry. The “other food” consisted of tuna sashimi, steamed egg soup and assorted tempura. We ordered two varieties of the tuna sashimi, one from Japan and one from Thailand. We preferred the one from Japan but both were very fresh with the usual consistency expected from this fish. The steamed egg soup was quite unusual, being very thick and flavourful with little pieces of shrimp and chicken. The assorted tempura were firm and well-cooked without being overdone and consisted of vegetables and a couple of large shrimp. Even though we ate a lot, there was still a great number of things that we would have liked to try. The teppanyaki for one as well as the sukiyaki, a noodle dish, some sushi and a dessert. That’s the ingredients for a whole other meal, however, and one that we will undoubtedly have here sometime in the near future, since we enjoyed this one so much. The restaurant lived up to its name, at least our probably-fractured interpretation of it, by being the centre of a place where there are a lot of good things. Try any of them and you will most likely agree with this assessment. Kisso, Westin Grand, Sukhumvit, Soi 19, 255·2440.