New Japanese sushi restaurant to open near Pearl

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A new sushi bar and Japanese restaurant called Nineteen Hyaku is coming to the Jefferson Bank tower on Broadway near the Pearl next year, another project from the prolific restaurant group behind Little Em’s Oyster Bar in King William and Up Scale in Southtown.

Nineteen Hyaku will occupy 5,000 square feet on the ground floor of the new tower at 1900 Broadway. The name is a nod to both the building’s address and the restaurant’s mission. “Hyaku” means “hundred” in Japanese, and Nineteen Hyaku owners Emily and Houston Carpenter of Carpenter Carpenter Hospitality said they intend to blend Western hospitality with Japanese sushi culture, serving lunch and dinner seven days a week.

With an opening date planned for July 2023, Nineteen Hyaku will focus on nigiri, sashimi and the multicourse, chef-curated sushi tasting experience called omakase, Houston Carpenter said. The menu also will include sushi rolls and hot dishes from a robatayaki grill showcasing high-end proteins grilled over Japanese charcoal, he said.

They’ve yet to hire an executive chef, Carpenter said, but the search is being facilitated by Up Scale sushi chef Ruben Pantaleón.

The restaurant’s beverage program will feature cocktails, beer and wine with the Japanese touch of a roster of specialty sakes curated like a wine list, Carpenter said.

A rendering by Crystal Sinclair Design shows a minimalist, elegant setting with 25-foot ceilings, floor-to-ceiling sheer white draperies that still allow in natural light from the massive windows, a grand central chandelier, warm woods, navy upholstery and marble counters. The Carpenters’ company is handling the buildout that will have an interior mezzanine for private dining and patio seating that will bump the restaurant’s seating capacity past 100.

For the Carpenters, the inspiration to open a sushi bar in their hometown followed a familiar path. Just as their oyster bar travels here and abroad gave rise to Little Em’s, what they call “sushi bar hopping” galvanized their idea to open Nineteen Hyaku.

“Why isn’t there an Uchi here, or Nobu?” Houston Carpenter asked, referring to sushi spots in Austin and New York, respectively. “We’re at a time of revolving, all-you-can-eat sushi,” he said. “We’re excited to introduce a refined sushi concept.”

The announcement comes as a breath of fresh air for a sushi scene that desperately needs it. A few local favorites like Sushihana and Sushishima offer a mid-level sushi experience here. Sushi at a level on par with national hotspots like San Francisco and San Diego was only introduced last year when Shiro Japanese Bistro opened, immediately climbing to the top and earning a four-star review from the Express-News with West Coast-style sushi, rolls and sashimi from San Diego chef Grey Hwang.

In addition to Little Em’s, Up Scale and Nineteen Hyaku, the Carpenters have two more San Antonio restaurant projects in the works. Their Southern-inspired Restaurant Claudine in the Government Hill neighborhood is scheduled to open in October, and the casual cafe and retail seafood counter Go Fish Market is coming in December to the Tobin Hill neighborhood.

Nineteen Hyaku, 1900 Broadway in the Jefferson Bank tower, Instagram: @nineteenhyaku | Twitter: @fedmanwalking | Instagram: @fedmanwalking