One of Dallas' most popular sushi restaurants has spun off a baby brother. Oishii, which has been a destination for sushi fans at Wycliff Avenue just off the North Dallas Tollway for more than a decade, has opened a second location at 5625 SMU Blvd. near US-75.
Chef and owner Thanh Nguyen nabbed the space that was once Across the Street Bar and was most recently Spin Pizza.
A spokesperson confirms that the restaurant is now open, starting with dinner service only. Lunch service will be added in February.
Dubbed "Oishii Boulevard," this location is helmed by Nguyen's nephew, chef-partner Tri Tran, who has worked at Oishii, Uchi, and Nobu restaurants.
Family-run Oishii is beloved for a variety of reasons, including its imaginative rolls, the hospitality of its staff, and its broad menu with not just sushi but also Vietnamese and Chinese dishes, including basic Asian favorites like orange chicken.
Ngyuen, an immigrant from Vietnam who graduated from Plano East Senior High School and The University of Texas at Dallas, where he majored in computer science, also has a local following.
He built his skills working at restaurants such as Nakamoto in Plano and Steel in the Oak Lawn area, before taking over a former Vietnamese buffet on Wycliff Avenue and opening Oishii — which means "delicious" in Japanese — in 2003.
The original Oishii is a convenient lunch spot for medical workers nearby, with reasonable prices and favorites like the spicy salmon cabbage salad and sushi lunch platter.
At dinner, they do specials like Peking duck, coconut sea bass, crab & Chinese asparagus soup, and the Royce sushi roll drizzled with truffle oil, as well as special requests for custom sushi dishes.
Its proximity to the Tollway has elevated its visibility for residents of the Park Cities, Preston Hollow, North Dallas, or Plano, who can pop down the tollway, pop into the parking lot, and boom.
It's also one of those all-walks-of-life places where you can rub elbows with people you wouldn't run into otherwise.
General manager at the new location is Brian Huynh, an Advanced Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers, who has worked at the Mansion on Turtle Creek and Gemma. He'll be using that training to up the service and beverage programs.
The new location is modern and well lit, thanks to a bank of windows on the facade facing SMU Boulevard. The dining room seats approximately 55, with an additional 20 seats at the sushi bar, and another eight seats at the regular bar.
Meanwhile, at the original location at 2525 Wycliff Ave., Nguyen has appointed Fabian Hernandez, a Certified Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers, to be General Manager. Hernandez and Thanh worked together at Steel Restaurant. He's also worked at Pappas Bros Steakhouse, Ocean Prime, and Nana Restaurant in Dallas.
And according to the spokesperson, Nguyen is opening yet a third restaurant: Called LaVui, it will be a banh mi & pho café, named after his mother, Joy, and will open at 5321 Maple Ave. in spring 2020.