ST. LOUIS BUSINESS JOURNAL — SanSai Japanese Grill in Maplewood has shuttered.
The fast-casual Japanese restaurant had operated at 803 Maplewood Commons Drive for more than six years and was the last SanSai location operating in the St. Louis area. The brand still maintains a presence in California, operated by a separate ownership group.
CEO John Kim, who also owns the local Wasabi Sushi Bar chain, acquired SanSai from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2011. His parent company, 5S Restaurant Management, had wanted to expand SanSai but changed course to focus on Wasabi. SanSai loyalty points will be recognized at Wasabi, he added.
"While we have made improvements in consideration for expansion of the concept, we decided that our energy can be better applied in growing Wasabi concept,” he said.
Wasabi Sushi Bar operates seven locations in the St. Louis area and is planning to open its eighth restaurant in Shiloh, Illinois. Kim declined to share specifics on where that restaurant would be located or when it would open but said he was at the letter of intent stage with the landlord.