A restaurant that was first announced back in October will have a dynamic culinary team leading the charge when it launches in The Village at Pacific Highland Ranch. Social Syndicate (The Local, The Rabbit Hole) has enlisted hospitality consultants Legal Restaurants, led by chef Antonio Friscia, to create the menu and train the kitchen for its new Japanese concept Wokou, which is scheduled for a January 2017 debut in Carmel Valley. Revolving around ramen, yakitori, and izakaya-inspired small plates, the eatery will also focus on craft beer and Japanese whiskey.
Locals with long memories will fondly remember Friscia's Gaijin Noodle & Sake House in the Gaslamp, which he ran with fellow chef Fern Tran, who is now a part of the Legal Restaurants family. Recently, Friscia and team have been working with The Patio Group, lending their prowess with yakitori to Fireside by The Patio's menu and developing Asian steamed bun recipes for the restaurant group's upcoming Bao Beach concept in Mission Beach.
Friscia shared, "Legal Restaurants is very excited to be a part of Wokou. We have always loved ramen and yakitori, as well as the excitement this type of food brings to a community. When I had Gaijin in the Gaslamp, chef Fern and I had a blast executing on this concept and I'm thrilled to be a part of a new venue so close to my home!"