Thursday, January 7, 2010

Shiki Kitchen

VANISHED

About a week ago Shiki Kitchen, the sushi place on 1st Avenue between 8th and 9th, shuttered for good.



The pizza guy next door confirms, "They're gone." The interior is being pulled apart and there's a note on the door, courtesy of "Everybody at Juicy Lucy"--"Good luck," it says, "We will miss you Shiki!"



Last summer, they were closed by the Department of Health, but managed to open again. This time, the permanent closure may have more to do with the owner's health. Chef Shiki, a former boxer and resident of Brazil, was a warm and friendly guy. If you went in there once, he recognized you the second time around and greeted you with a big hello.

When he wasn't cutting sushi, he was carving intricate creatures and human figures out of paper. These artworks hung all over the restaurant--from strings dangling from the ceiling, on shelves, walls, everywhere you looked. You could buy them and take them home.

He made Ninjas--



--with butterflies on their sleeves--



--and an occasional Roman soldier, among many, many other things.



Each figure is amazingly cut and folded from a single piece of paper. These three remain with me. Where did the rest of them go?

9 comments:

Melanie said...

My friends and I tried to eat there last week but they were in the process of closing.(we did not know this at the time). Sad--they were a very good sushi place. Those cut outs are fantastic. I will miss them.

EV Grieve said...

Another interesting character gone from the neighborhood...

i am storm. said...

Beautiful artwork. Sad that they had to close.

Goggla said...

I hope he continues to do something with his paper art - those are cool.

MC said...

Oh NO! No, no, no!
Master Shiki was also known for singing Japanese karaoke. I will miss this place, with all it's cut-outs and little baby sweaters in frames on the walls. Farewell, Shiki San!

Ayun said...

dang.

I have fond memories of going here when my children were toddlers. best of luck to Chef Shiki and crew.

Scott said...

Yeah I passed by last week when I noticed they had closed. I ran into Shiki outside and asked him what happened. He said the landlord was raising the rent and he couldnt afford it. Sad, really sad. Such a nice guy with great charm and sushi. This has been my spot for years – heck, there was even a photo of me on the wall!!

Do these asshole landlords really want a vacant storefront that badly?

shikixface said...

Right now he's in Japan with his new wife. He's really happy now. I'm his daughter and he really loves his customers and thanks them for being there for him over the years.

Jeremiah Moss said...

thank you for the news on Shiki. glad to hear he is happy and healthy! please wish him well.