To celebrate its upcoming opening set on Saturday, March 28, Kuro Restaurant hosted a special invitation-only sake ceremony and tribal blessing. This unique event honored the Seminole and Japanese cultures that form the heart of the Kuro concept. Representatives from the Seminole Tribe of Florida were there overseeing the tribal blessing and executives from Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino were in attendance in another beginning in the Hard Rock success story.
Following the blessing, a ceremonial sake barrel was broken, officially signifying Kuro’s arrival. This tradition, called kagami-biraki, is a celebratory event in which the lid of a sake barrel is broken by a wooden mallet, a practice meant to honor the gods and ask them to bestow good health and fortune.
Apparently, it brings a great view too. As part of a series of upgrades at the Hard Rock property, the newly constructed Kuro sits poolside between the Rock Shop and valet pick-up. Once inside the casino you can find it at the heart of the casino between the Hard Rock Cafe and the Hard Rock Store.
At the Kuro entrance, the staircase leads to a space that feels open and intimidate. Scanning the room, guests are greeted with a beautiful bar of mixologists, followed by a wall of glass doors overlooking the pool area, a back sushi bar and an alluring visible wine cellar with a wide variety of carefully chosen bottles.
Joining the festivities were Kuro Executive Chef and the resort’s Creative Culinary Director Alex Becker, a veteran of such celebrated concepts as Nobu and Katsuya; Executive Sushi Chef Shuji Hiyakawa, a protÃ©gÃ© of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and Vice President of Food & Beverage Justin Wyborn, a restaurant industry pro with two decades experience and the driving force behind Kuro’s exciting concept.
“This ceremony is the perfect way to honor the traditions, cultures and histories that have made Kuro a reality,” says Justin Wyborn. “We’re excited to add another fine-dining option to the resort that is also unique to the market, offering fresh contemporary Japanese creations in a socially interactive atmosphere. The restaurant is the beginning of a very exciting evolution at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. This has truly been a team effort and we hope this ceremony, in a small way, pays tribute to the countless hours of hard work and passion that our team members have dedicated.”
The Kuro team is not only passionate, but professional and congenial. The servers invite guests to take an interactive culinary journey geared to enhance the dining experience as they guide guests along a roller-coaster of flavors, textures and combinations. Their expert chefs collaborate to utilize local sources and ship directly from Japan, resulting in scallops of ideal texture, garlic-enhanced shrimp tempura, a flavorful blend of Wagyu Tacos with spicy cilantro, fresh sushi, Maitake Mushrooms with yuzu dressing and Tuna Tataki with creamy avocado.
Their specialty drink menu features unique flavors and fresh ingredients made with confidence and consistency. Infused with modern and traditional flair, the bar buzzes with bartenders adding infused mushrooms to cocktails or slapping herbs to release aromas in a drink. Mixologist Jared Boller has finally made cocktail selection easy by categorizing the handcrafted cocktails into five flavor profiles: sweet, sour, bitter, salty and umami. With 30 sake brands on the menu, 110 wine labels and a knowledgeable staff, this upscale dining experienceÂ is enhanced by the nightly lit pool view. Another exciting reason to rock a the Hard Rock.
Reservations: 954-585-5333 or Open Table.
Photos by: Zoe Zielinski