Soon, Jerry Barakat will have yet another restaurant in the capital city. The restaurateur's next establishment will be a Japanese restaurant, Kemuri, in Hillcrest.
Barakat says he hopes to open Kemuri, at 2601 Kavanaugh Blvd., by late July. The restaurant, located in the former home of Ferneau and Rocket 21, will feature seafood, sushi and smoked meats, according to Barakat.
One thing is for certain, Barakat says, patrons can expect fresh food.
"I don't care about the cost, as long as it is fresh and quality food, I will serve it," Barakat said.
The long-time Little Rock restaurateur said he's excited about his newest venture that has been a dream of his for more than 20 years. Barakat said he's always been drawn to this type of restaurant for its healthiness and flavor.
Right now, Barakat says he's waiting on an alcohol permit and putting the finishing touches on the menu. Kemuri is supposed to receive its permit in mid-July.
Kemuri will have about 4,800-SF of space and room for about 150 patrons inside and around 30 outside. The restaurant will have two bars, one sushi and one for drinks.
Barakat also wished to address a rumor he's heard swirling that Alex Guzman, his current sushi chef at Ocean's, would be leaving that restaurant for Kemuri.
"Ocean's is doing marvelous," Barakat said. "It would be stupid of me to shoot myself in one foot to help the other. Alex is staying at Ocean's."
Barakat said Guzman is training chefs at Kemuri to bring his style of sushi to Kemuri, but reiterated he would stay at Ocean's.