A highly respected sushi chef is planning a very special restaurant for Dallas: It's a new sushi restaurant, name still TBA, from Jimmy Park (Nobu, Nori Handroll) in which the chef will offer a unique and extremely personal omakase experience. Omakase is when you leave it up to the chef to decide on your order.
The restaurant is going into the old Daddy Jack's space at 1916 Greenville Ave. It'll be small, with limited seating and a limited menu, inspired by the kind of place documented in the film Jiro Dreams of Sushi.
Park is very excited about his concept.
"My idea is to do a true tasting restaurant, unlike anything else in Dallas," he says. "It'll be a 12-seat sushi restaurant with set menus, and reservation-only."
"The ultimate goal is to put a beautiful custom plate in front of you, where you eat everything with your hands," he says.
Park was working at Nobu Dallas when he left to help open Pok the Raw Bar in 2016, one of the first poke concepts in Dallas. In 2018, he opened Nori Handroll in Deep Ellum, and is still involved but stepped back after the onset of the coronavirus so that his kitchen staff could stay employed.
Prior to coming to Dallas, Park worked at Nobu in Aspen and San Diego, where he was the only Korean chef among an all Japanese staff. He also worked at the acclaimed Kabuto Edomae Sushi in Las Vegas, a small, secret kind of place with a set menu, similar to what he hopes to do at his new place.
They'll incorporate the edomae style of sushi in which the fish is aged, fermented, or otherwise treated to bring out its best properties — a style that Park introduced at Nori.
"The restaurant will have edomae style dishes while incorporating new techniques and innovating new flavors to sushi," Park says. "We'll have three set menus, and we'll be working with the best fish, with a menu that changes all the time."
Park says he's bringing in "one of the top chefs of all time" from Las Vegas, who will be master chef.
Construction has just begun, and he hopes to open in early 2021. "We had a few months delay, but in the end, it's probably just as well since it wouldn't feel comfortable seating people right next to each other," he says.
They're going for what he calls a "New York vibe."
"I want it to be that feeling where you find this hole in the wall with a limited number of seats and crazy sushi," he says.