Boulder's Japango Restaurant on Pearl Street just updated their digs with a new outdoor patio, a community table in the dining area, and a new jellyfish tank, among many other updates. With the renovated space comes a new bar menu, an expanded cocktail menu, a late night happy hour, and what is now the largest saké selection in Boulder. The restaurant and sushi bar reopened over the weekend.
Japango took over the old Potala Imports space on Pearl Street, and added a bright, open-seated dining area, sushi bar, and cocktail lounge. Fun fact: The new bar is made out of Tiikeri, a material made from reclaimed sorghum stalks.
With more space comes a craftier cocktail menu, with new renditions of their specialty cocktails, a soju cocktail section, a martini section, and a sampling of mocktails. Expect drinks like saké sangria the Serrano Splash with house-infused Serrano pepper vodka, St. Germain liqueur, agave nectar, fresh lemon and lime juices, and muddled basil. Japango will soon acquire one of Boulder's celebrity bartenders as their new mixologist— stay tuned.
On top of these inventive cocktails made by mystery rockstar bartender, Japango has beer from Avery Brewing, Dogfish Head, and about 40 craft beers in bottles. New additions to the saké list make it the largest offering that Boulder has to offer.
Beginning next week, Japango will also introduce a new bar menu, which includes Japango favorites like Crispy Brussels (flash-fried brussels sprouts tossed in soy sauce and Japanese 7-Spice) and Jalapeño Hamachi (hamachi sashimi with jalapeños, yuzu and cilantro), as well as new dishes like 52 Shishito (the peppers will be prepared differently every week, hence the 52). The bar menu will be served in the bar and lounge all day and night, with happy hour pricing from 3 to 6 p.m. The new late night happy hour is on Fridays and Saturdays from 10 p.m. to 12 a.m.
Japango is owned by Jon Banis, formerly of Wine Bar in Boulder. After serving as Japango's general manager for several years, he took over ownership six years ago. The head chef, Iwasa Yukiji, is another Japango veteran who has been with the restaurant since its opening in 1999 with a brief hiatus to Las Vegas. He returned to join Banis' team when he took over.
The blend of traditional and contemporary Japanese food is available at Japango for daily lunch, afternoon happy hour, and dinner.