Japanese fusion in westchase
A new restaurant dedicated to Japanese-Peruvian fusion cuisine opens in Houston this weekend. Pacha Nikkei begins dinner service this Friday, August 12.
Located in the Westchase District at 10001 Westheimer Rd., Pacha Nikkei constitutes a full service version of the concept that chef-owner Masaru Fukuda first launched at the short-lived Politan Row food hall in Rice Village.
Fukuda, who is of Japanese-Peruvian ancestry, has worked at some of Houston's best restaurants, including Latin Bites, Kata Robata, and MAD. To help create the restaurant, Fukuda enlisted the assistance of consultant Sebastian Laval (MAD, Le Colonial) and general manager Kellyn Ferman (Kata Robata).
Although other restaurants incorporate Nikkei dishes into their menus, Fukuda claims to operate Houston's only dedicated Nikkei restaurant. A true fusion cuisine, Nikkei blends Peruvian ingredients with Japanese techniques.
The restaurant's interior pays homage to the chef's heritage via murals that depict his family's emigration from Japan to Peru in the late 1800s. Other design details include natural wood finishes and blue accents. Overall, the restaurant will seat 10 at its dedicated ceviche bar, 32 in a bar and lounge area, and 64 in its main dining room.
Fukuda's menu focuses heavily on seafood with dishes such as lobster ceviche, ceviche clasico, and seared octopus. Meat lovers may opt for a classic lomo saltado. Look for Nikkei sushi rolls such as the Pasha roll that captures the flavor of ceviche by combining shrimp tempura, mango, and avocado with tuna and micro shiso on top.
Beverage offerings will include pisco, infused pisco, sake, and Japanese whisky. Cocktails include the Pisco’nic (in-house pisco blend, Japanese yuzu liqueur, and tonic), Wagyu Old Fashioned (wagyu fat-washed bourbon with a shitake and nori reduction), and the El Tunche (Pandan-infused Haku vodka, Midori, coconut, and banana).
Diners who find themselves nodding along to the restaurant's soundtrack should thank the chef. Fukuda drew upon his time as a DJ to curate the restaurant's playlist.
Pacha Nikkei opens for dinner Monday-Saturday at 4:30 pm.