While working as a dishwasher in a restaurant in Virginia, Joe Chow started thinking about his future.

“I always think about if you work for someone else you can only do so much, so I always wanted to own my own business,” he said.

In 1996, he opened his first restaurant specializing in Chinese dishes. In 1999, he opened Japon, a Japanese restaurant in Plano. After selling Japon, he opened Shogun Hibachi & Sushi Japanese Steakhouse in McKinney in 2005.

In July, opportunity knocked again.

“Last year was a good opportunity to open a business because you could get a good price to open a new restaurant because a lot of people were afraid. But for me, I wasn’t afraid,” Chow said. “I took a chance. You have nothing to lose.”

Chow said his new restaurant, Koto Hibachi & Sushi, has the same menu as Shogun. The main difference is at Shogun, the hibachi is cooked in front of guests whereas at Koto, the grill is in the kitchen.

“This is good for the adults that are tired of going to the show every time,” said Yourie Chow, Joe Chow’s daughter. “The show is usually for the kids; this is for people who just want the food.”

As the business name indicates, sushi is also served here. However, a surprise for the customers is when they discover that Pho is also on the menu.

Pulling from his 30 years of restaurant experience, Chow created recipes for all the menu items.

“There’s no secret recipe,” he said. “Everyone can cook but it’s how you cook it that’s important.”

The restaurant’s top three menu items are Joe’s Special Roll ($14), the Frisco Roll ($12.95) and Hibachi Chicken (lunch $11.95, dinner $15.95).

Chow said he is pleased to have so many regular customers already, some of whom have followed him from restaurant to restaurant.

“I see people who are very satisfied when they visit here. That makes me very happy,” Chow said. “When I see people and they say, ‘Thank you Joe, you have great food,’ that makes me very satisfied.”

Koto Hibachi & Sushi

5995 Preston Road, Ste. 103, Frisco



Hours: Tue.-Thu. 11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Fri. 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m., Sat. noon-10 p.m., Sun. noon-9:30 p.m., closed Mondays