Daily 49er

Japanese fusion coming to Cal State Long Beach

Hibachi-San brings poke and sushi to campus.

Saul Torres, Staff Writer

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Cal State Long Beach students will no longer see an empty vendor stand in the University Dining Plaza, as Hibachi-San will soon be setting up shop.

Although Hibachi-San is planning to open by Nov. 30, Panda Express Area Coach of Operation Vanda Srisaeng-ek said that the opening  might be delayed due to equipment issues.

The 49er Shops Director of Marketing and Communication Kierstin Stickney said that CSULB was approached by Panda Restaurant Group, which owns Panda Express, to open Hibachi-San on campus.

“The 49er Shops are always looking for new and diverse concepts to bring the campus community,” Stickney said.

The menu offers traditional Teppanyaki Japanese cuisine, Srisaeng said, as well as poke bowls and sushi rolls for students at prices ranging from $6 to $9.

A poke bowl is a Hawaiian fish salad that includes ingredients such as green onions, soy sauce, seaweed, sea salt and raw fish.

Hibachi-San will have protein options of fish, tofu, tako and lobster.

The restaurant  will also offer hot plate options, including shrimp tempura, grilled chicken, grilled steak, grilled salmon and miso soup.

“It is something we are very excited about and students have been asking for,” Stickney said.

CSULB international student Laura Laplana said that she is excited to have a fresh sushi option on campus, since the only other sushi choice is premade from the Beach convenience stores.

“I think that it will give me a variety of choices to chose from but a healthier meal,” she  said.

As part of the Panda Express Group, Hibachi-San is an independently operated restaurant chain, responsible for hiring and training its own staff.

According to Vanda, the opening of Hibachi-San will create more on-campus jobs and the majority of the staff will be made up of CSULB students.

The training for new staff members has already begun at other area stores such as the Cal Poly Pomona locations.

CSULB will be the second Cal State University campus to operate a Hibachi-San.

Senior communication major Alondra Aguilar said she’s not just happy, but thrilled to have a new, different option for on-campus dining.

“I can’t wait to taste the food, but also see what kind of sushi they have to serve,”  Aguilar said.

Hibachi-San will be located next to Panda Express in the UPD, where the Nugget Grill Express used to be.

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