After nearly a year of closure the wait is over. Oishii opens today at 11 a.m. for lunch. Thanh Nguyen closed his Oak Lawn neighborhood restaurant last December after it was completely destroyed by a fire.
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The same blaze shuttered Sal's pizza next door, but the damage to the pizzeria wasn't nearly as extensive and that restaurant quickly reopened. The renovation efforts efforts at Oishii have been slow by comparison, and it wasn't until September, when a new sign was hoisted into place, that signs of life began to take shape.
If you haven't been following the saga, the menu is expected to be just like the old one. Expect pan-Asian dishes like Peking duck, pho and coconut sea bass along with a strong focus on sushi and sushi rolls.
The dining room, however, sounds like it has a whole new look: A news release describes golden wall tiles from Italy and over-sized Italian lighting fixtures "reminiscent of large bells."
I only ate at Oishii once before the blaze and remember the decor as plain and standard -- about what you'd expect from a sushi restaurant located in a strip mall. This sounds like a bit of an upgrade.