From Western Canada to Guelph, a new restaurant chain has opened its doors in Guelph.
Edo Japan, a restaurant offering quick and casual Japanese cuisine, launched earlier this month at 292 Stone Rd. W.
With about 175 locations across Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario, Edo Japan employees are hoping to offer the Guelph community an alternative to burgers and fries.
“I think it’s the next up and coming business, in terms of what consumers are looking for in terms of it's an alternative flavour to what they’ve been used to,” said Terry Foster, vice-president of franchises for Edo Japan.
While some may think of sushi when thinking about Japanese cuisine, the most popular item at Edo is the signature teriyaki meals, which come in beef, chicken, shrimp or vegetables. Besides the signature teriyaki meals, Edo Japan also sells hand-rolled sushi, ramen or udon soups and bubble tea.
Foster said it's the Teppan-style cooking, which involves cooking food over a hot grill, is what appeals to customers.
"We sear it to lock in the flavour," said Foster, adding it's also quick and convenient way to get a hot meal.
"Being that the restaurant is only a 15-minute walk away from the University of Guelph, I think our proximity to Guelph’s educational centre is both fitting and convenient for our many staff who are students there," said Allan Murcia, director of operations, Ontario who was a key member in helping to open the Guelph franchise.
"They've definitely been waiting for a different choice of food," Foster said about the reactions from residents who have stopped to try Edo Japan.
"We have everyone to children from 40 to 50-year-olds, and we have seniors who come into our restaurants."
Edo Japan began in Calgary by a Japanese Buddhist minister, Rev. Susumu Ikuta.
Today, Foster calls Edo Japan a 'western success story.'
"We've opened a couple of locations in Ottawa, we've opened up in Mississauga and we've just recently opened in Kingston and Guelph, and they've all been doing amazing," said Foster. "I can't believe how busy each one has been, it's fabulous and it's really proven it's success already since we've moved out here."
Currently, the location has hired 19 staff and is looking to hire more full-time workers. Foster said there is the potential to open two or three more Edo Japan locations in Guelph in the future.
“I love the brand, and obviously my career, and we have such an excellent menu that customers love. When I mention to people that I work for Edo, the first thing they say is, ‘I love Edo, it’s so fresh and healthy.’”
Edo Japan is currently open seven days a week from 11:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.