FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Fairfield’s newest restaurant looks very much like one of its old ones.
Akita’s red siding, the Asian brush lettering on its sign and its interior theme match the previous tenant's design. But the Asian fusion restaurant’s new owner and chef have brought what they say is an improved menu to the Kings Highway East location.
Akita Japanese Steakhouse opened in Fairfield this summer, taking over the building previously occupied by Kobis, another Japanese steakhouse. New owner Kammy Chow arrived in late July with plans to expand the restaurant beyond the hibachi grill.
The restaurant still features meat grilled in the Japanese teppanyaki style, including Kobe beef by special order. But Akita will also serve more fresh sushi and sashimi, made with fresh catches and live shellfish, not frozen ingredients, Chow says.
“We kept the Japanese food of Kobis,” she said. “But with more sushi, more wines and more choices.”
Some additions to the menu and a new sign aren’t the only changes Chow instituted for Akita’s opening this July. She also brought in Chef Po Lueng, who studied culinary arts in Hong Kong, Japan and Thailand before coming to the United States.
Leung and the new staff “have more experience” than the previous kitchen crews, Chow says. With his background, he has added more pan-Asian and Asian fusion dishes to the menu, combining Thai and Cantonese dishes with the traditional Japanese fare.
Akita operated on a bring-your-own-bottle system for its first couple months but received its liquor license just before its ribbon-cutting ceremony last week with First Selectman Michael Tetreau. The restaurant now serves a wide selection of sake and beers imported from Japan and offers happy hour specials every weeknight.
“At the beginning [business] was slow, because we didn’t have a liquor license,” Chow said. “But since then it’s been pretty good.”
Akita is located at 541 Kings Highway E., Fairfield. It is open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. weekdays, from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays and from noon to 9:30 p.m. Sundays.