The Innovative Dining Group team is at it again, opening a new sushi restaurant in the heart of Burbank this week. Yakumi lands at 3919 W. Riverside Drive, with a grand opening (that means patio seating with COVID-19 protocols in place, for now) plus takeout and delivery on Thursday, March 11.
Locals will know the massive Innovative Dining Group for its many related restaurant concepts, including Roku/Sushi Roku, Boa Steakhouse, Katana, Robata Bar, and more. IDG’s Lee Maen and Philip Cummins are behind this new expansion for the company, along with PizzaRev founder Nicholas Eckerman. Yakumi is meant to be a more upscale fast casual arm for the company, offering some counter and sit-down indoor service (once such things are available again) along with takeout boxes in the style of so many other Sugarfish-related spinoffs these days. That means rolls, hand rolls, nigiri, and more, served a la carte or as increasingly robust combination packages.
The arrival of Yakumi comes an an interesting moment for sushi restaurants around Los Angeles right now. Many have been closed or greatly reduced as a direct reflection of the ongoing global pandemic, with some turning to bento boxes or other at-home kits to make the model work without traditional counter service indoors. Meanwhile, a whole new collection of sushi and bento restaurants has come online in just the past year, from Sunset Sushi in Silver Lake to Tama Sushi in the Beverly Hills area.
What’s more, it remains to be seen how areas like Burbank, with massive daytime office worker populations during ‘normal’ times, will rebound post-pandemic. In some cities like San Francisco, tens of thousands of workers who previously inhabited offices buildings in certain neighborhoods are now being told to work from home permanently, shifting the restaurant dynamics for those areas overnight. While Yakumi won’t open as a lunchtime option, it still remains to be seen how evening hours are affected as Los Angeles begins to move into a post-coronavirus world.
Yakumi opens Thursday, March 11 in Burbank for delivery and to-go only (and March 13 for on-site dining), keeping hours from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. for on-site dining as well as takeout and delivery, with an extension to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.