Akari Sushi

Sushi lovers in Plano have hit the jackpot at Akari Sushi restaurant. Tucked away on the Northwest corner of Parker and Custer, this hidden gem is a veritable treasure trove of Japanese dishes skillfully and beautifully prepared by the owner and head chef, Danny Gil.

For Chef Danny and his wife, Biki, who works front of house, this restaurant truly is a family affair. The hardworking couple opened Akari as a means to support their family and as a positive environment for their growing son. Chef Danny said he strives to make the work they do all “about love and family” and hopes that Plano patrons will feel the difference when they dine at Akari.

The minute guests enter, they receive a warm welcome. The no-nonsense interior is casual, relaxed and intimate. The cozy ambience makes even newcomers feel like regulars.

Chef Danny preparing the Orange Dragon roll // photos Emilee Prado

While the location is unassuming, the food is anything but. Akari prides itself on “its modern interpretation of classic [Japanese] dishes and its insistence on only using high quality fresh ingredients,” according to its website. Chef Danny brings an undeniable level of care and creativity to his work that shines through in the meticulous presentation and flavorful fare.

Suburban sushi scene enthusiasts might recognize Chef Danny from his years as head chef and manager at Densetsu in Plano, followed by Shiawase in Allen. With this impressive culinary pedigree, Chef Danny returned to Plano and opened Akari, last May.

Authentic, affordable Japanese cuisine doesn’t go unnoticed in Plano for long; good news travels fast. And a loyal following from Chef Danny’s days at Densetsu managed to locate his latest project by word of mouth.

At Akari, diners can expect everything they’ve come to know and love from Chef Danny’s previous work plus a whole lot more. The wide-ranging menu encompasses everything from savory rice bowls and noodles to an extensive sushi list that will make even ambitious foodies do a double-take.

Try the Akari Heaven (a fan favorite) as well as the Romantic Danny roll – created by Chef Danny, but as he humorously pointed out, not named by him. Get the most bang for the buck at lunch time, with outstanding deals on bento boxes for a mid-day feast.

Between the reasonable prices and large portions, Akari has already made a splash with Plano food fans. In online reviews, returning customers are quick to praise the top-notch quality, excellent value and stellar service. And for a sushi restaurant, Chef Danny knows that is no small feat. He recognizes that some people consider sushi “not filling enough,” but promises that will not be an issue at Akari. His goal is for people to “leave full and happy.”

Grab an open seat at the bar and likely be greeted by Chef Danny himself. Sip sake, watch the head chef work his magic and enjoy tasty offerings from this under-the-radar restaurant; it won’t stay a secret for long.

Akari Japanese restaurant is open daily for lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Order take-out online at akariplano.com, or place an order for delivery using Uber Eats, DoorDash or GrubHub.

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