A Japanese firm that made its identify with upscale blowfish omakases might be getting into the U.S. with a extra informal, reasonably priced sushi restaurant in Murray Hill.
Tokyo Ichiban Meals — a gaggle with 50 eating places in Japan — is opening a model of its informal restaurant Wokuni at 325 Lexington Avenue, close to 39th Road, subsequent month. It can serve a fish in quite a lot of methods, together with as sashimi, tempura, and grilled.
The corporate is greatest recognized for dozens of places of Torafugu-tei, a restaurant that serves tiger blowfish, the fish with a extremely toxic liver that requires talent to grasp as a chef. However Wokuni will probably be much more informal than Torafugu-tei and won’t be serving blowfish, a minimum of for now.
It’ll, nevertheless, be serving fish raised in the identical farm as Torafugu-tei’s blowfish. Ichiban Meals owns its personal fish farm that raises solely blowfish, bluefin tuna, and yellowtail. It’s a transfer meant to streamline high quality and to maintain costs low, based on the corporate. The U.S. location may even promote the fish instantly, which means a retail portion within the restaurant the place individuals can purchase fish to convey residence to prepare dinner.
For now, sushi will will value $17 for eight items, and sashimi is on monitor to run between $20 and $35. Sashimi bowls might be provided at lunch, and appetizers can be round $7. Gunkanmaki, or rolls with nori wrapped round rice and elements on prime, will value $10 for 3.
It seems like a mannequin not too far off from LA-based sushi powerhouse chain Sugarfish, which has been perpetually busy because it opened New York for its comparatively reasonably priced omakase. That chain, too, was began by individuals with upscale backgrounds.
Wokuni is just one of many restaurants coming to the U.S. from Japanese chains just lately. Within the final yr, at the very least seven different corporations have made New York debuts, together with Ichiran, Ikinari, TsuruTonTan, and Zauo, a restaurant opening in December the place individuals can literally fish for his or her dinner. Although lots of them have ambitiously got down to open tons of places, Ichiban Meals has not but expressed want to plop reasonably priced seafood eating places throughout New York.