Pyait Kyaw nevertheless remembers the initial food he experienced when he arrived in the United States at 7 decades old as a Burmese refugee: A Japanese beef and rice bowl termed gyudon.
Kyaw is heading to serve the very same dish at the new Asian fusion restaurant he is opening before long at 106 Bleecker St. in Utica.
The restaurant — called Nanabi Cafe — however is going through renovations, but Kyaw stated he ideas to open up in April or May well.
Comfort and ease Asian meals with a contemporary twist
Kyaw said he desires to present some thing different from the regular Asian restaurants where by you sit down and wait for your foods, he reported. It will have comfort and ease Japanese, Korean and Asian fusion food items with a “present day twist” influenced by popular dishes blended with Asian avenue food items.
The menu will consist of primarily takeout bento boxes, which are regular Japanese boxed meals. These will have a main dish, an appetizer and facet dishes. Folks can pick rice bowls, Korean buns, takoyaki or octopus dumplings, miso soup, aji fry or fried fish, sweet potato fries and fried rice among others. The cafe also will have different sauces produced in-house.
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Nanabi Cafe will also bring the common boba tea or bubble tea with chewy tapioca balls. These will appear in dairy and nondairy types.
Using a probability
Kyaw grew up in New York City and Utica, wherever he attended Thomas R. Proctor Higher Faculty. Unable to come across modern Asian foodstuff in Central New York, Kyaw claimed he would like to provide a modern restaurant with a metropolis vibe to Utica.
“Utica is developing with the clinic, the college now, I see a great deal of people, young children,” Kyaw said. “I want to give them a thing enjoyable and stylish, you know, one thing for folks to halt by.”
Kyaw by no means planned to devote his lifetime to foods, but it all altered when he commenced getting treatment of his father and doing the job at nearby eating places these as Lotus Yard and Dragon Cafe in Utica. That is the place his passion for food stuff grew, inquiring thoughts and practicing at dwelling, he explained.
Kyaw also labored at a friend’s cafe in Syracuse and until eventually lately, as a sushi chef at Sushi Sushi cafe at Turning Stone, a task he give up to go after his desire of opening his have restaurant.
“I just saw the likely, I saw the opportunity and, you know, I’m going to just take it,” Kyaw said. “I’m likely to use my time to devote and even if I are unsuccessful, I’ll know that probably I will have a probability of success.”
A enthusiasm for Japanese culture
Nanabi, which usually means seven tails in Japanese, is the title of the restaurant, which symbolizes the 7 partners concerned in the organization.
In fact, Japanese and Asian cultures are current not only in the cafe but also in his existence. Kyaw traveled to Japan, Thailand, Burma and explored the countries’ foodstuff and society to increase as a chef, he stated.
“If you want to be a chef, you have to vacation, you have to consume and get out of your convenience zone,” Kyaw explained. “Which is the change amongst a cook dinner and a chef, a cook follows procedures and a chef creates.”
A refugee himself, Kyaw claimed he acknowledges the struggles they facial area. Which is why, he reported, he would like
to give back again to the community and provide employment prospects for refugees and nearby persons.
“Utica is built from refugees … this whole area is crafted on it,” Kyaw stated. “That’s why we have to try for the ideal.”
Maria M. Silva handles food stuff, drink and tradition in the Mohawk Valley for the Observer-Dispatch. Email her at [email protected]
This article initially appeared on Observer-Dispatch: Burmese refugee opening new Nanabi Cafe on Bleecker Avenue in Utica