Not long ago my teenage daughter came home raving about this cool new sushi place called FUSIAN that she had been to with friends. She finally convinced me and we ventured out for family dinner one Saturday night.
It is bright, contemporary and minimalistic in décor with lime green as the accent color. I hesitate to call it the Chipotle of sushi, but……it is a similar concept. This casual dining concept of creating your own entrees has become popular across the board. The energy of the employees was hard to miss. I almost wanted to jump behind the counter and build sushi rolls with them! The music was upbeat, and the line was growing with eager customers excited to design their own sushi rolls.
Since its inception in 2010, FUSIAN has grown to 13 locations in Ohio. Solely owned by two brothers, Zach and Josh Weprin and their friend Stephan Harman, they plan to keep this as a small business at the moment rather than franchise according to Tim Johnson, Team Development Specialist. They have several mantras, but simply put, they just want people to have a wonderful experience and enjoy the process from beginning to end from the moment you step through their doors.
My daughter loves that they are environmentally conscious using plant based food packaging and providing recycling and compost areas for your trash. Unfortunately I don’t think all customers knew what went where, but we know ultimately it won’t be the landfill.
Twice is nice….or not
Remember, sushi does NOT mean raw fish; rather it means vinegar rice. At FUSIAN you begin by choosing your wrap, soy or seaweed, and then white or brown rice. As Mr. Johnson said, “Eating with your eyes is the first step”. My eyes were probably too big for my stomach. As you move down the line you select your protein, veggies, and finally how you want to top off your 10 piece roll. Indecisive would be a good adjective for me, but FUSIAN team members were helpful and offered good advice as I made my selections. You may also opt for a sushi bowl if you are not a fan of maki rolls. You can go and never eat the same thing twice if that’s what you prefer.
They offer salmon, tuna, chicken, steak, tofu, crab mix, and shrimp tempura. Yes, I DID say chicken and steak. As crazy as that sounded to me my youngest actually ordered his roll with chicken. They lack a kids’ menu, so the chicken and rice can be a good option.
The PB&J roll is a crowd favorite with the kids. Sounds a bit odd, but the rice acts as bread and the soy wrap is very neutral. Those rolls are $5. If you have a picky eater who can’t live without chicken tenders and fries, or you have one with a nut allergy, then you may want to check out their full menu online before stopping by. Milk is not available but every 45 days they switch up the flavors of their teas and lemonades which are made in house and with agave for sweetener.
Along with the energy, I sensed a feeling of community. After speaking with Mr. Johnson and perusing their website, I saw those are in fact just a couple of their fundamentals.
FUSIAN has a very long table in the middle of the dining area. The kids and I nicknamed it the community table. Mr. Johnson said its purpose is indeed to connect people; maybe get people striking up conversations with strangers and enjoy someone’s company, without being connected to a device. Mission accomplished. All of us noticed the strangers who were enjoying their food as well as face to face conversation with someone they had just met. FUSIAN’S goal is to stimulate all five senses, not just taste. Again, I say “mission accomplished.”
The Short Course
To avoid wait: Anytime
Noise level: Moderate
Bathroom amenities: No changing station
High chairs? Yes
Got milk? No
Kid’s menu? Not exactly, but they have a couple options kids may find appealing
Allergies? Make them aware at the time of your order. They will prepare you food in a different area and with other ingredients that never came near the line risking cross contamination.
Bottom Line: FUSIAN says “easy.casual.sushi.” You can add in energetic, fresh, bright and inviting and that sums it up. Though many love to come in and create their own sushi rolls and bowls, it could be somewhat limiting for the younger set if they are picky. Check out the options online before heading out with your little ones in tow. As for the older kids, it may become their new favorite place to chill.
Karen Zickes is a mom of three active children and freelance writer who resides in Holland, Oh. She can be reached in c/o firstname.lastname@example.org.
3504 Secor Rd. | Suite 305 | Toledo