Kayuga: All in the Family

Let's Eat by Kitty Kaufman

Kayuga is an all-in-the-family story: boy meets girl, can't talk to each other, fall in love anyway, get married, have a baby and open a restaurant. Soo Kim and Chuan Ci Wang are making a splash on Commonwealth Avenue in Allston with sparkling Japanese cuisine.

Kim says, "You don't have to talk; I could tell that he cared about me." MFEO, made for each other, it sounds like since she spoke no Chinese and he no Korean and not much English, when they met.

Several years ago, Wang had a well-placed lunch at Mr. Sushi, another Brookline restaurant. In short order, owner David Sung had hired Wang away from his Rhode Island job. Kim was already on staff. They married, son Joshua was born in February, the restaurant followed in May.

You find all of the usual suspects for sushi: bincho maguro, aoyagi, chutoro, and botan ebi. Makimono picks for vegetarians take in asparagus maki, Idaho maki, and vegi dreaming with avocado, cucumber and asparagus. Lobster plays big on this menu with lobster miso, Boston maki with lobster and ishikarinabe, a miso-based broth with lobster.

If you come with a party, be sure to reserve one of the tatami rooms, which seat 16. The varnished wood and smart black lacquer furnishings lend warmth to this cozy spot.

A new business, their first, in these uncertain days has not lessened Kim's fire. She confides, "Even though it's stressful, for me this is better." Better to own your own business? "Absolutely." And what about all the hours? She smiled and answered, "We love our customers, we're closer than Chinatown and we're open late."

© Summer 2003 for the Brookline Tab
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