There's a long list of restaurants opening at The Star in Frisco, and now an essential category will be filled: sushi. Sushi Marquee is a new independent sushi concept opening in the fall, from Crafted Bar Concepts, a group of operators that includes Brad Hawkins, owner of Shakertins, the cocktail bar in The Colony.
Hawkins, who is joined by Dallas Hale, Matt Saba, Anthony Morel, and Chris Scott, says that Sushi Marquee will be fun, lively, and interactive. It's inspired by a favorite haunt of his while he lived in Los Angeles.
"After high school, I went to live in Los Angeles, where my favorite place was a little mom-and-pop called Tokyo Dell," he says. "It was black on the outside, very unassuming, but once you got inside, there'd be music playing, and all the chefs would greet you with a welcome. There'd be sake bombs, it was very interactive, and so much fun."
He wants to re-create that kind of electricity but with "high-end sushi."
"I haven't seen other places around here do tasteful sushi but with an exciting live element, something where you walk away and say, 'That was fun,'" he says.
The "marquee" part of the name refers to the incorporation of movie elements.
"It's based on movie nostalgia for films like Karate Kid, Chuck Norris, films that are centered around kung fu and Japanese culture," he says. "We're thinking of playing the best fight scenes, and every 30 minutes there'll be some kind of show, always something to entertain people while they're having great sushi."
Hawkins knows entertainment, with a background that includes stints at the Ghostbar at the W Hotel, where he was VIP manager; he was also part of the team that reopened Sfuzzi on McKinney Avenue and in Las Colinas, which helped his segue into the restaurant world.
It'll have a prime spot near the entrance of The Star, where they hope to appeal to families and Toyota executives.
"We knew that the Jones family was looking for a Japanese concept and hadn't settled on one yet," he says. "I grew up in Plano, I went to Plano Senior High — to have them choose us is such an honor.