The History Behind Shogun Japanese Steakhouse

The History Behind Shogun Japanese Steakhouse

2024 is all about celebrating 50 years of Rosen Hotels & Resorts, but we believe Orlando’s beloved I-Drive Steakhouse deserves a spotlight as well.

Exterior of Shogun Japanese Steakhouse, the perfect destination for Eat What You Want Day

Serving the Orlando community and guests worldwide under Rosen since 1975, Shōgun Japanese Steakhouse has made Rosen history with its culinary excellence and dedication to providing guests with a dining experience unlike any other.

Let’s take a dive into how Shōgun came to be and see why it reigns as Mr. Rosen’s favorite restaurant!

The Rise of Shōgun

Shōgun Japanese Steakhouse has history that predates its namesake. Hotelier Mr. Harris Rosen had just purchased the then Rodeway Inn in 1975 that had a delicious Japanese steakhouse called Yasaka Gardens on its grounds.

Yasaka Gardens was owned and ran by an elderly Japanese couple, referred to only as Mama-san and Papa-san, who had garnered a healthy number of customers since they opened its doors.

Although loved by many, the couple found themselves in a sticky financial situation when it came to keeping Yasaka Gardens’ doors open. When they lost their lease, Mr. Rosen offered the couple space in then International Inn, now Rosen Inn, saving both them and the fate of the steakhouse.

Yasaka Gardens continued to be a hit among locals and visitors alike, so when the elderly couple announced their retirement, Mr. Rosen bought their restaurant and renamed it Shōgun Japanese Steakhouse.

Years continued to pass, renovations to the interior décor were made, and talks of adding a sushi bar to the steakhouse later led to the restaurant’s newest addition, Shōgun Sakura Sushi.

Eat What You Want Day - Chef preparing meals on a teppan grill.

Although Yasaka Gardens had donned a new name, its stellar quality of food and love from people all around remains unchanged.

From Yasaka Gardens to Shōgun Japanese Steakhouse

Mr. Rosen didn’t pull the restaurant’s name out of thin air. He wanted something indicative of Japan’s history that represented what the steakhouse on International Drive stands for.

Shōgun, short for Sei-i Taishōgun, translates to “general who overcomes the barbarians” and was a title held by chief military commanders between the 8th and 12th centuries. The title was later given to Japanese military rulers following the end of the 12th century.

During Mr. Rosen’s service in the Army, he obtained a black belt in judo in Korea during the 1960s. During that time, he traveled to Japan and met a sumo wrestler named Taiho, whose skills Mr. Rosen was so impressed with that he referred to Taiho as the shōgun of sumo wrestlers. Our founder also serves as an Honorary Consul General of Japan in Orlando.

This history goes hand in hand with why Mr. Rosen saw Shōgun as a suitable name for his newly acquired steakhouse, and so it came to be! To be a shōgun is to lead with prominence and respect, and those are traits we strive to reflect through our high-quality food and top-of-the-line service at Shōgun Japanese Steakhouse.

Be a Part of Shōgun’s History

Shogun Sakura hotel sign

Taste every bit of Japan’s history in every bite of our delicious, authentic dishes at Shōgun Japanese Steakhouse. While you’re here, cheers to 50 years of Rosen Hotels & Resorts and celebrate with a glass of Japanese sake. Stop by Sakura Sushi for a quick bite and feast upon the finest Japanese flavors International Drive has to offer.

Discover More

Shogun Japanese Steakhouse on International Drive is where talent, fresh flavors, and entertainment ignite on the grill. Our teppanyaki shoguns bring the heat and humor in an unforgettable dining experience unique to all restaurants on International Drive. Dine with your crew around the teppanyaki or at a table. We also love hosting gatherings and small parties.