Mr. Max himself, Hare Nakamura, died in 2013, but his namesake restaurant is still going strong in its third decade of business. A casual oasis of high-quality Japanese food in an Irving strip mall that also contains five hair salons, Mr. Max offers cold and hot appetizers, grilled seafood and irresistible fried snacks like takoyaki, the battered balls topped with dancing bonito flakes and concealing nuggets of octopus within. Half-sized bowls of ramen mean you can chow down on noodles and still have room for something else.
Top pick: The chef’s choice sampler plate of three appetizers is just $10 — including a glass of beer.
Fun fact: If you elect to eat at a table, you’ll need to remove your shoes and sit on the floor.
3028 N. Belt Line Rd., Dallas, 75062