BizHawk: Oku California Asian Restaurant Opens on Santa Barbara’s Waterfront

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One of the owners of the popular Opal restaurant on State Street has opened a new eatery on Santa Barbara's waterfront. 

Oku offers California Asian food with a sushi bar, owner Tina Takaya told Noozhawk

"The goal is to create a local’s place on the water where locals feel like family and visitors feel like locals," Takaya said. "It feels that way to me already. I am grateful and excited to create something fun for the community." 

Oku is a Japanese word for “when you enter a space it feels right," Takaya said.

The restaurant offers a rooftop bar with an outside patio lounge area and fireplace. Takaya, an interior designer and landscape architect, helped create the menu.

She has partnered on the venture with Koji Nomura, former owner of Piranha and Rocks. 

The restaurant held a soft opening in October, and plan a formal grand opening and advertising to launch the business in November. 

Oku is at 29 E. Cabrillo Boulevard, in the Funk Zone, and across the street from the ocean. 

DMHA Architecture + Interior Design, in collaboration with Henry Lenny, were the architects for the project, and Young Construction was the general contractor.

Oku is open from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursdays, and 5:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The restaurant is also open for lunch between 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., along with a social hour from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

New Offering from Hollister Brewing

The beer at the Hollister Brewing Company, 6980 Marketplace Drive in the Camino Real Shopping Center, has found a way to get even better.

Hollister Brewing recently decided to start selling its brew in 16-ounce cans in 4-packs.

The first offering is Juiceometry Hazy IPA. It cost $20 and is only available now at the restaurant. 

Santa Barbara Bed Tax Rises

The city of Santa Barbara collected approximately $1.93 million in transient occupancy taxes (TOT) for September 2019, about 4.2 percent above September of last year.  

The city has an adopted TOT budget of $19.9 million. It has collected about $6.7 million as of Sept. 30.

The fiscal year runs through June 30, 2020.

— Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) . Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.