In 2002, Michelle Koo made a bold decision: to realize her dream of serving New York “five-star” Asian food at a price everyone could afford. Such dreams are fulfilled every year by New York’s many new restaurateurs. However, the reasons behind Michelle’s decision were more than pursuing a passion for food.
After 12 years of observing the restaurant business as a hospitality industry accountant, Michelle’s leap into the culinary world was ultimately triggered by the events of September 11, 2001. With many of her colleagues affected by the dramatic downturn in the Lower Manhattan hotel business, Michelle saw an opportunity to help friends who lost their jobs after 9/11 by starting her own business to help them support their families – and start over. In April 2002, Koodo Sushi opened its doors at 129 Front Street, just steps from the Wall Street neighborhood still struggling to recover.
Following a modest beginning (with fewer than ten customers per day), Koodo Sushi blossomed into a thriving business thanks to hard work, long hours and – most importantly – terrific word-of-mouth recommendations from customers who experienced great food, quality service and an affordable price. Relationships with residents and a who’s who of financial service employees were fostered. After a rough start that would typically close a new restaurant, Koodo Sushi became – much like the rest of Lower Manhattan – truly revitalized. The critical raves soon made their voice heard uptown, when Michelle opened Koodoos Restaurant at 1453-1457 Third Avenue on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in 2006.
Despite the success, Michelle Koo and her staff strive to meet one common vision when serving each customer: combine delicacy and artistry to offer incredible sushi and Asian food. We invite you to experience Koodo by visiting our restaurants or ordering takeout online.