When you have something as grand as multi-million dollar, 11,000-square-foot Japanese restaurant, there's bound to be some drama involved. Doing a little damage control about last week's mass exodus at Gonpachi, the restaurant's publicist Joan Luther told us that some initial hirings didn't work out, there was a little disorganization in the beginning, and yes, people quit: "Let's just say that east didn't meet west very well." But she tells us owner Kozo Hasegawa has already hired new people, including new GM Kiyoshi Sagawa, which is more a promotion (he's been there since the beginning). They're still looking for a few more servers, but "everything's smoothing out."
Now that the fire's out, is it wrong to add fuel to the glowing embers? A new rumor hit our inbox today that there's some competition between the new restaurant and the longstanding Matsuhisa across the street, and it may have started way back in Japan. But that's a whole other story, one which we know nothing about. It does sound intriguing though.
· Gonpachi: Staff Walks, Mother's Day "Catastrophe" [~ELA~]