Boom Noodle in Bellevue Square is dead. Long live Kaisho, an izakaya restaurant to be opened under the same ownership and offer a blend of Asian cuisine with a Western flare, says Jeffrey Lunak.
The culinary vice president of Madison Holdings, which operates two Boom Noodles and six Blue C Sushi’s in the Seattle area and is now expanding into California, Lunak said Kaisho will be a place for friends and family to meet up for a seasonal variety of food and drinks.
“Our version consists of a little wider catalogue of food offerings and something that’s a little more diverse, and a confident nod to a diversity of Asian cultures,” he said.
Lunak has an extensive culinary background, and is most well-known as a protege to Masaharu Morimoto, assisting the Iron Chef in opening a number of restaurants in America as an executive chef and chef de cuisine.While izakaya is a Japanese style of small-plate dining with an emphasis on drinking, Lunak said Kaisho will also incorporate Korean, Vietnamese and Thai elements with a Westernized approach, and focus on local ingredients and beverages to appeal to a diverse clientele in downtown Bellevue.
“Obviously, the restaurant and my background is more Japanese than anything, but we didn’t want to relegate ourself to one type of cuisine,” said Lunak, “nor did we think, that area, we thought it needed something more dynamic for people to come for multiple occasions.”
The menu will be printed in-house and change seasonally, but Lunak said some signature dishes will include black bass, a spin on chicken and waffles, dim sum and a smoker has been brought in for pork loin steam buns as an Asian take on American barbecue. There also will be about 10 signature cocktails, which will also change seasonally.
“Our interpretation is kind of a global izakaya,” he said. “Small plates are definitely going to be a focus, but we’re also going to have a family style.”
A glass blower has been brought in to craft light fixtures and dining ware as part of a fairly extensive remodel of the old Boom site, and Lunak said he thinks people will be very surprised once Kaisho opens sometime in mid- to late-November.
At this time, Bellevue Square is the only planned location for a Kaisho restaurant.
“I think we’re just focusing on this location,” Lunak said. “With the expansion of Blue C, we just want this location to be the best it can be, and that’s what we’re focusing on, right now.”