Nigori Gourmet & Sushi Bar, a new restaurant specializing in Asian cuisine, has opened at 2549 Castle Hayne Road in the Wrightsboro area.
Owner Yu-Fan Chen is originally from China and was in raised in New York City, where he was a sushi apprentice at his father’s restaurant. When he moved to Wilmington, his uncle, Johnny Chen, owner of several Nikki’s Sushi locations, took him under his wing, and he worked for him for the past decade at various restaurants.
Yu-Fan’s sister Jing Chen also worked for their uncle, eventually taking over ownership of Nikki’s Steak House & Sushi Bar, 1055 Military Cutoff Road, with her husband, Yun Zhao. The couple opened Nori Asian Fusion & Sushi Bar at The Pointe at Barclay with the help of Johnny Chen this past spring.
Now Johnny Chen has helped Yu-Fan open a place of his own in a former Kentucky Fried Chicken and in an area of town with few dining options.
“He has helped me every step of the way, and his advice has been very valuable because of all of his experience,“ Yu-Fan Chen said. “Dining options are very limited in the Wrightsboro area so this is something I think this area needs. It’s very family friendly, relaxed and easily accessible to those that live in the area.”
The space has undergone a complete transformation from a fast food joint to a tranquil dining room designed with natural elements of wood and stone and vibrant green succulents.
Nigori’s menu offers a full selection of sushi, sashimi and specialty rolls, as well as teriyaki and hibachi dishes and traditional Chinese stir-fry, noodle and rice dishes. Lunch combos range in price from $6.95 to $12.95 and are offered 7 days a week from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the full menu is available all day.
Chen said some of the classic sushi rolls from Nikki’s menus are available, and he and also plans to run weekly specials to introduce his customers to new dishes.
“This way we have some of the old favorites as well as something for those who want to try something new,” Chen said.
Chen added that he wished to thank all those who have come out to support him so far, saying the Wrightsboro community has been incredibly welcoming.
Nigori Gourmet & Sushi Bar is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
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