Kenko to Bring Fast Casual Sushi, Hibachi Experience to University Circle

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Shinto Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar (17070 Pearl Rd., 440-878-3868) in Strongsville has been chugging along for 11 years.

But management knows that many of its loyal customers don’t have the time or money to make frequent visits to their favorite suburban Japanese restaurant. So Shinto is bringing the restaurant to them, so to speak.

When it opens in early May, Kenko (11310 Euclid Ave.) will act as a fast-casual version of the Shinto sushi and hibachi experience, says GM Jay Saleh.

“We’re taking the best elements of Strongsville and streamlining it for the students and commuters because nobody in that area really has time for a full sit-down meal,” he says. “Kenko will be the same high quality with a lower price and quicker time.”

Guests will place their order at the counter and watch as their food is prepared in front of them. Many of the most popular rolls from Shinto will be available, including the Little Delicious, which is rolled with avocado, crab, spicy tuna and cream cheese and then deep fried. Also on the menu are Spider Rolls and Shrimp Tempura Rolls. Guests can also design their own rolls from a list of cooked and raw fish or vegetables. Diners can choose between white or brown rice.

To streamline the hibachi process, chefs will swap the traditional teppanyaki grills for woks. The meals are built around chicken, beef or shrimp and include veggies and rice. Everybody’s favorite Yum Yum sauce is served on the side.

There will be seating for 100 guests with more to come when a rear patio is unveiled. A limited beer and wine list will be available.

"We're all very excited for it," says Saleh.


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