The Sushi Bar in Edmond, Okla. re-opened its indoor dining over a month ago. So far, so good. The desire for fresh seafood in the landlocked community near Oklahoma City has remained steady and strong. And despite a few hiccups in exotic fish availability from Japan and Dallas, the beat goes on.
In this week’s Q&A with Boxerbrand’s blog Recipe for Success, The Sushi Bar—Edmond’s GM Janet Lim shares a few insights about how her restaurant has survived the government lockdown and pandemic.
BB: How did The Sushi Bar roll during the lockdowns?
JL: When we first started hearing the news about the pandemic, our first thought was for the safety of everyone, for our customers and our employees. So, we closed our 20-table restaurant and switched over entirely to curbside and to-go service.
BB: Was this a hard transition?
JL: We were already doing a lot of our business in to-go orders, so the transition was pretty smooth in terms of service. And our owner was very thoughtful with our servers. Rather than lay them off, he gave them the choice to come back and work offering takeout and curbside.
BB: It sounds like The Sushi Bar didn’t miss a beat.
JL: We had to survive, and the to-go business allowed us to operate at half capacity, as we maintained all the sanitation and social distancing standards. The demand for our food remained because the quality of fish is so high, and a lot of our rolls and menu items are easy and safe to transport.
BB: What are your most popular bites?
JL: Before the pandemic, our Special Rolls of exotic fish were very popular. We normally fly in fish twice a week, and our Ora King Salmon from New Zealand was very popular. Our sashimi, fresh fish filet and sushi rolls were also really popular.
BB: How do you pull in customers?
JL: We’re in a shopping plaza that’s convenient to a lot of neighborhoods. And when we first opened about 10 years ago, we were popular because we could provide fresh and exotic fish to a landlocked area that didn’t get a lot of fresh fish. The quality of our fish is what keeps people coming back. We also offer a late-night special, after 10 p.m., which is popular with students.
We just reopened our restaurant and bar about a month ago and we’re listening to all the news and guidelines, and making sure we maintain social distancing. I’ve been in restaurants 10 years. It’s hard work and unpredictable!
Thanks Sushi Bar! Keep up the good work. — The Sushi Bar in Edmond, Okla. is a treasured Boxerbrand customer. They use Splash menu cover products in their table presentation.