Gyu-Kaku - San Diego, CA

4.7
865 reviews
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$30 and under
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Japanese
Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ in sunny San Diego, CA is the ideal spot for an amazing experience in Scripps Ranch! Conveniently located right off the 15 freeway by Edwards Mira Mesa Theatres and close to Ballast Point Brewing!

Traditionally called Yakiniku, this Japanese barbecue spot is known for their delicious, fresh (never frozen), high-quality meats!

Enjoy an ice cold beer as you grill your own meat. Happy Hours offer the best deals on food and drinks, so be sure to wind down and get the night started right with us.
What 865 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.6
service
4.5
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
96% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Orange County
2 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Monica, our server is the best. Outstanding service! She’s definitely a keeper!

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K
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Matt is a great guy! Keeps us happy even when the kitchen and the place got too busy.

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OT
New Orleans
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Birthday celebration

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CA
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

It was my first time. Took my friend for her bday during lunch. Food was freaking delicious! Lunch menu size was perfect. On top of that, my friend enjoyed her cute bday ice cream and how the staff sang to her. Thank you!!

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OT
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on July 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this restaurant. Fun and interactive. We always go for special occasions.

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NO
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Wonderful experience, very attentive waiter and delicious food!

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SC
1 review
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was fantastic! We did the all you can eat, and it was well worth it! Server was very friendly and helped us get the most value our of our experience!

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food is good & good services.

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JG
San Diego
1 review
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service! Meats are always fresh and delicious. We love the all you can eat menu!

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OT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on June 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My life partner and I enjoyed it

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LT
1 review
Dined on June 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My favorite place! The food is amazing, especially the garlic fried rice. The staff are always friendly and helpful

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on June 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a good place to go to share food with the family.

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T
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 2

The experience was super fun to cook your own food at the table. The service was friendly and warm. I did find the place a bit dirty. When we arrived the table was clean but the seat had crackers and crumbs all over them. The floor is unfinished concrete, which looks unkept and dirty for a steak place. It seems a bit dirty for a place that raw food arrives. The meats are good but thin and not as substantial as they look in the pictures. Overall it was a fun experience to try but probably just a one time thing.

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NN
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

This place is awesome! The food is amazing. The choices of meat and sides are top notch.

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MY
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on June 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had an excellent experience at gyu kaku. The hostess and server - Ariel, were really nice and inviting. They were very quick with getting our order and looking after all our needs in terms of getting drinks, utensils for our little one and drink refills. They notice we were out of town’er and just told us more about the city and where to go. The food quality was really good too! A few different options than what we are use to back in Vancouver. If we came back to San Diego, we would definitely be back.

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B
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on June 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server, Steven, was upbeat, personable, funny and attentive. The meats were tender and flavorful.

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JG
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The meat and service was amazing. The venue is very modest and the noice volume is great here. Appreciate that this restaurant does not have their music blaring.

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s
San Diego
1 review
Dined on June 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My first visit here and will definitely return. Had no idea how much fun we would have. The service was great, food was good and plentiful, the energy within the restaurant was high!

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The only issue was that all the food came out at once so it felt hurried (but wasnt). Good was yummy, thw filete mignon was not seasoned but all the food was great. Would definitely return.

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M
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on June 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always great food here! I always meet up with a couple of old coworkers here. Put in a reservation on any day or time because they are always busy!

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OT
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Great food and friendly staff. We arrived around 530 and only waited 10 minutes to be seated after our reservation. Please note: you shouldn’t consider AYCE if you are expecting KBBQ speeds or serving sizes (it takes a little longer and sizes are a bit smaller). The food is excellent quality and we had a great time. We ended up doing the Samurai 4-person deal and even ended with the s’mores. We’ll be back!

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TR
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on June 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dinner was delicious as usual. Our server was great and it's always a pleasure to have dinner at Gyu-Kaku.

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OT
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on June 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing service

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JJ
San Diego
1 review
Dined on June 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Hard to find waiter when needed. May be the restaurant should hire more waiters.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

My whole family was impressed with the quality of meat here that we don’t want to try and go back to Korean bbq. It is pricey compared to kbbq but it is worth it for their AYCE. Service has been really good, but today was okay but our waiter felt sorry for the wait, and he gave us desserts of our choice 😍. Overall, I will give this place 4.5 star. Taking off 0.5 star for the time limit for their AYCE. I eat slow and with the kids.. 90minutes time limit is very short. If I eat on my own, 30min max is my limit. Plus waiting for the meat to arrived doesn’t justify the 90min time limit.

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y
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 4

Good food and fun experience.. Make sure to get the s’mores!

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S
1 review
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love that they can safely cater for celiac (gluten free). It was a treat to be able to share everything that was served.

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EL
Salt Lake City
1 review
Dined on May 27, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Ran out of several meat choices. We had to wait another 15-20mins. we we reordered 2 items.

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AN
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

It's a good place to go with a group of friends to share drinks and food. I recommend going during Happy Hour to keep costs down.

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E
San Diego
1 review
Dined on May 21, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 3

While usually Gyu-Kaku is one of my favourite restaurants to eat at with friends and family, this particular visit was extremely poor in comparison to old ones. The food itself just seemed lackluster as the meat mas much tougher than usual and the rice itself was stale and under cooked. I was just somewhat dissatisfied with this particular time that I visited.

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M
1 review
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The first thing i would like to do is thank Monica for her service. She explained the cooking process and explained the order of the meal very mice. Took some family members who were in town and they loved it. My daughter did the cooking so she felt like she was back in Japan. Thank you so much

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SM
San Diego
1 review
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food. Staff was very friendly. Definitely going back

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CS
San Diego
37 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Amazing food and super cool experience!
The quantity of protein is significantly more than you would expect for the price!!! The sauces and so yummy! The lunch menu is super reasonable! Just GO!!

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S
1 review
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Badass Restaurant, Favorite BBQ spot. Food is always insanely good.

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BB
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was very delicious. Service was outstanding (Frank was amazing).

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 5

It took a little over 30 minutes for the food to start coming out. The server did warn us the kitchen was backed up, but still, you can’t really enforce the time limit when the food doesn’t come out in a timely manner. Once the food did start coming out though, it trickled out at different times. The veggies came first but our meat didn’t come out until we were almost done eating the veggies. We ordered a couple rounds of meat and veggies but that’s pretty much how it came out the rest of the meal. So we never really got to eat our items together but rather one type of thing at a time. The timing was just really off so it was hard to fully enjoy the meal. Also, our table got overwhelmingly cluttered with serving dishes and tin foil as the staff did not pre-bus until near the end of the meal. I just feel that for what you pay to eat here, the execution should be better.

The quality of the food was good, however. All the appetizers and meat we tried were delicious. I think if they can figure out a better system and make the experience a smoother one for guests, it will be worth another visit.

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RS
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

I made a reservation and included in the notes that we were bringing a 3 year old and to please have a booster/child seat ready. We were told at one point that they thought our party of 6 included the child; but the hostess already admitted she didn’t even read the note. Someone was apparently trying to shift the blame back onto us and had us wait an additional 30 mins. We did not appreciate that and no compensation was offered.
When we finally received our food, we had a problem with our grill which we repeatedly mentioned to the servers/bussers. One person that finally stopped to see what the problem was simply told us to wait a few more mins, as he removed the outer circular part for “more air.” We still continued to have an off and on-going problem with our grill throughout the meal. Their recommended grilling time of one minute per side was obviously past 5 mins per side, affecting the quality of the food. So one half of our party was done with their food before I could even cook any of the food for myself. When I finally was able to begin to cook my food, someone had brought out all the desserts, in which I had ice cream. It was very bothersome to quickly eat my food before my ice cream could melt. The servers were obviously not paying attention and didn’t seem to care as they dropped off the desserts.

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VO
San Diego
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time having Japanese bbq. Our waiter Rob was awesome

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience for a family with kids, we enjoy very much.

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TS
San Diego
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Really fun and good dining experience. Quality is good but found the place a bit loud with the music so conversation may be difficult with larger party. There are so many different kinds of meat we were eating, after awhile dont know what is what, but everything was tasty and fun to grill your own meat.

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