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"We're not closing down:" Acclaimed Korean restaurant introduces a "more approachable" menu

Acclaimed Korean restaurant introduces a "more approachable" menu

Dosi Korean restaurant interior
Dosi plans to introduce a new menu on May 15. Photo by Eric Sandler

Dosi owner An Vo was surprised to read on Monday evening that his restaurant is closing. Vo sent a six-sentence email to his publicist announcing some changes, but nowhere in the email does it say anything about closing permanently. To those who read the initial report, Vo has a simple message.

"It got twisted the wrong way that we were closing," Vo tells CultureMap. "We're still alive and kicking. We're not closing down."

 "It got twisted the wrong way that we were closing," Vo tells CultureMap. "We're still alive and kicking. We're not closing down." 

However, change is coming to Dosi. Vo says the restaurant will be moving away from the "chef-driven" items created by executive chef Jordan Asher and sous chef Daniel Toro by adding "more approachable items that everyone’s going to love." Dosi will also add lunch service but will drop its recently-introduced Sunday brunch.

"We had a great run," Vo says. "We had a great time growing Dosi together, but after 10 months we didn’t receive the following we expected." 

While both chefs have resigned, Asher is staying to consult on the new menu, which has been under development for a few weeks and will make its official debut when the restaurant reopens May 15 after a five-day hiatus. Vo wants some of the new menu items to be a surprise to diners but offers some hints about what "more approachable" means. Asher has already added a David Chang-style pork belly bun, and the new menu will use language that's familiar to people who enjoy Korean food.

"On our menu, we’ve never had the word ‘bulgogi.’ You’ll see the word 'bulgogi' on our menu," Vo explains. Korean fried chicken will remain on the menu, but with a lighter, New York-style crust that's already found an audience at Museum District restaurant Dak & Bop

While the food menu is changing, Vo says Dosi's large selection of infused soju will remain. "We’re refocusing our restaurant on the soju bar program," Vo says. "I think we put emphasis on a lot of the food, but I think soju is still a great beverage and Houston will love it. We’re going to give it one more try."

Hopefully, the new direction helps get Dosi on course to avoid the fate that befell Korean restaurant Nara in West Ave, which closed in January. Street construction on Shepherd has made the restaurant difficult to access, but Vo says that most diners liked the restaurant once they tried it.

"Our food takes time to get familiar with. Once you do try it you fall in love with it," he notes. "Unfortunately, it’s been 10 months."

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