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If you hear “Japanese food” and think “sushi,” well, you’re not wrong. But there’s so much more to explore in Denver when it comes to Japan’s rich culinary culture, from traditional Japanese cuisine known as “Washoku” to more recent additions like ramen, udon, soba, yakitori and even poke (the Hawaiian dish is heavily influenced by Japanese cuisines and shares many of the same seasonings, so you’ll often see it listed alongside more traditional Japanese selections). For upscale Japanese dining, you can’t go wrong with Matsuhisa Denver. Founded by famed Japanese chef Nobuyuki "Nobu" Matsuhisa (yes, that Nobu), the restaurant’s menu is influenced by Chef Nobu’s training in Tokyo and his travels to countries like Peru and Argentina, leading to a revelatory fusion of flavors. Another favorite? The crispy, crunchy, karaage fried chicken at Osaka Ramen, flavored with citrus and soy.