FOOD: Nhinja Sushi

Written by Laura Beam in the February 2014 Issue

The Nhin FamilyYou’re probably part of one of the most explosive dining trends that has emerged in this decade and you may not even know it.

Most of us routinely rush into our favorite restaurants expecting the ultimate experience­—fantastic food at warp speed for a reasonable cost. Doesn’t sound like anything new to us, but to the restaurant industry, customers’ growing demand for quality food without the wait spurred a new genre of fast casual eateries. Seemingly overnight, a whole new breed of restaurants was born.

Diners today want healthier, higher-quality foods than fast food offers, yet don’t want the longer wait and pricier tab of full-service, casual dining. Rising to fill the culinary void, fast casual restaurants provide superior ingredients and higher-end menu items but keep them affordable by eliminating the wait staff. It’s a win-win: diners get the fresh, delicious foods they crave, in the eat-and-run environment they demand, and restaurants get to stay true to their first love—a superb menu.

One fast-growing local eatery, Nhinja Sushi & Wok, has perfected fast casual dining with a level of integrity that extends beyond just the sumptuous menu. Owners Kang and Mary Nhin, a husband and wife team, along with their eldest son Michael, attribute much of their success to their focus on family and sustainability—both in the food they use and their day-to-day operations.

With three metro locations, they are guided by a distinct commitment to sound environmental business practices. The Nhins aspire to pass these lessons on to their children. “Kang loves to fish,” Mary remarks. “He teaches our children the right types of seafood to eat and which fish are abundant, to avoid the harmful results of overfishing. In our restaurants, we provide high-quality seafood at the cost and convenience of faster food. So the seafood that we’re serving here is the same quality that you’d get at a fine dining restaurant.”

“We are a multi-generational operation,” Mary notes. “The success of Nhinja reflects the power that a family-run business can possess in the local economy. An innovative, refreshing take on business is just what we’re delivering.”

Greeted by a large menu on the wall as you enter one of the cheery, contemporary Nhinja restaurants, you immediately get a taste of the fun, fresh, distinctive philosophy that drives this family business. Starters, soups, salads and a feast of mouth-watering sushi rolls rev up your appetite.

Wok’d entrées give diners a choice of chicken, beef, shrimp or tofu, paired with rice and one of Nhinja’s expertly blended sauce and veggie combos, like the popular Mongolian—a savory mélange of onions, snow peas and sweet garlic soy. Rice and noodle bowl selections bring an additional punch of variety to the menu. As you place your order at the counter, the servers are happy to help you discover just the right taste you’re seeking and then prepare it fresh when you order.

Whether you kick back in Nhinja’s sleek dining area over a saucy shrimp dish, share sushi rolls with friends at lunch or stop in to grab a family dinner on the run, you can savor every bite with a delicious sense of culinary, environmental and economical satisfaction. Being good never tasted so great.

Nhinja Sushi & Wok restaurants are open every day from 11am-9pm at 12305 N. Rockwell Ave. in OKC, 13905 N. May Ave. in OKC and 5 W. 15th St. (at Broadway) in Edmond. For catering information or to order online, visit nhinja.com.

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