Pacha Nikkei Merges Two International Cuisines with New Restaurant
What do you get when two great culinary traditions intersect? Serving Japanese and Peruvian fusion cuisine, Pacha Nikkei recently opened in Carillon Shopping Center next to Marble Slab Creamery. Chef-owner Masaru Fukuda curates and creates the recipes influenced by his Japanese-Peruvian ancestry. Fukuda’s concept centers around Nikkei food which comes from Peruvian ingredients – tropical fish, quinoa, Amarillo peppers – molded by techniques perfected in Japan. Ceviche is commonly associated with the Nikkei style.
Recipes and design pay homage to Japan and Peru
According to Chef Fukuda, Pacha Nikkei will introduce the unique flavors, philosophy and techniques of Nikkei cuisine to Houston. “In doing so, the restaurant pays tribute to a successful integration of cultures that goes back 120 years in Peru, and that has significantly contributed to the gastronomic wealth of the country,” said Fukuda.
Pacha in the Quechua language of Peru means “world” and Nikkei is a Japanese word, widely used in Peru to refer to Japanese-Peruvian people. “The encounter between these rich cultures has given rise to a delicious culinary expression that we would like to share with the world,” said Fukuda.
Four generations of Fukuda’s family and the Japanese migration to Peru in the late 1800s adorn the restaurant’s interior walls. Diners will notice natural wood finishes and blue accents complementing abstract art that depict Fukuda’s family narrative.
District diners get unparalleled menu with exciting cocktail choices
Fukuda touts Pacha Nikkei as the first Nikkei restaurant to open in Houston. “We pay attention to a lot of details in the menu and also in our cocktails,” said Fukuda.
There’ll be plenty of space to enjoy Fukuda’s cocktails. He built a bar and lounge area with seating for 32 to sip on drinks like the El Tunche, a pandan-infused vodka, Midori, cocoa and banana or Wagyu Old Fashioned with wagyu-fat washed bourbon and Japanese plum liqueur.
Pacha Nikkei diners will savor a menu primarily focused on seafood: lobster ceviche, ceviche classico, and seared octopus. Nikkei sushi rolls with mango and avocado flavors and a few beef dishes complement the offerings. The menu is divided by small plates, ceviche, maki and hot plates. Beef lovers will enjoy seeing beef heart skewers and beef tenderloin served with potato wedges, red onions, tomatoes, soy/oyster sauce and a side of rice.
Pacha Nikkei gained a strong following at its former home in Rice Village in Politan Row food hall which closed after the pandemic struck. Fukuda was attracted by Westchase District’s location. “I saw the potential this area had, and I also saw in the increase of business after the pandemic,” said Fukuda. “Also, I love the location, I believe that is a central location for people driving from inside the loop, Katy and Sugar Land.”
This iteration of Fukuda’s exciting concept comes with a 64-seat dining room, full-service bar and lounge, plus a 10-seat ceviche bar. Fukuda had help from consultant Sebastien Laval (La Table, Le Colonial, MAD, Musaafer) of Laval Hospitality in making the concept a reality. His general manager is Kellyn Ferman who is known for Miyako and Kata Robata. Pacha Nikkei is open for lunch and dinner. See hours below.
10001 Westheimer Road Suite 1040
Open 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday; 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday; closed Mondays.