Chef John Ng and Lina Goh of Zen Box Izakaya have announced plans for Sushi Dori, the last of the upcoming food hall’s six concepts
The team behind locally led food hall Eat Street Crossing has announced the sixth and final spot in its counter-service lineup: Sushi Dori, an izakaya-style sushi concept by chef John Ng and Lina Goh.
Ng and Goh, who own Zen Box Izakaya in downtown Minneapolis, are bringing the same snacky, approachable vibe to Sushi Dori. (An izakaya is a casual Japanese bar that serves small, tapas-like dishes and snacks alongside alcoholic drinks.) “We don’t want to replicate what traditional sushi is about,” says Ng. “We own an izakaya, so we always take the idea of a gastropub into consideration.” Sushi Dori will be stationed right next to Eat Street Crossing’s bar, so diners can grab a cocktail (or a nonalcoholic drink on tap) and pair it with small plates of sushi and snacks.
Menu details are still being finalized, but Ng and Goh have a few hints: They’ll be incorporating fresh herbs, vegetarian options, and one dish featuring spam. A fried chicken rice sandwich may make an appearance, as will a variety of snacks.
Ng and Goh have traveled widely in Japan, and their experiences there helped shape the idea for Sushi Dori. “You know how in America, we love everything about Japan?” says Ng. “When you go to Japan and see the way they eat, it’s actually the opposite — they love western food too, like a western breakfast with sausages, for example.” The best word to describe it, he says, is fusion. “We saw something similar to what I’m doing right now — sandwiches with rice and nori sheets. That inspired us with this idea of bringing both worlds together in one dish.”
Sushi Dori joins Ng and Goh’s other Eat Street Crossing concept, Ramen Shoten, a “stand and slurp” ramen bar. Elsewhere in the food hall, Gabriella Grant-Spangler and Ben Spangler will be serving Bebe Zito ice cream, burgers, and fried chicken sandwiches, as well as Brazilian-style pizza from their new Ouro Pizzaria. Trish Gavin is leading the bar program (expect everything from Negronis and Hawaiian shaved ice to nonalcoholic drinks on tap) and bubble tea shop Chatime will have a counter as well.
Eat Street crossing is slated to open this winter. It’s a unique addition to the Twin Cities’ food hall scene in that its food offerings are coordinated — Ng, Goh, Grant-Spangler, Spangler, and Gavin have worked together to create a cohesive dining experience. “We have the freedom to collaborate and bounce ideas off each other, to cross-use ingredients and be able to really complement one another,” says Goh. “We can’t wait to get this done — it’s been three years in the works.” Keep an eye on Eat Street Crossing’s Instagram page for updates. Now that all six concepts have been announced, an opening date is likely coming next.