The Isshin Asian Café opened a week ago at 815 S. South Pelham Rd., next to Winn-Dixie. It offers a variety of Japanese, Chinese and Korean dishes for what Lin said is a nominal price.
“We have most any Asian dish you’re like,” said Lin. “We serve hibachi and stir fry food and stir fried vegetables with or without meat. We offer a good selection of food on our menu.”
Lin said his restaurant offers fresh salmon, chicken dishes and several kinds of sushi.
“We have a very interesting selection of sushi rolls,” he said. “We have California sushi rolls and spicy tuna sushi rolls, and we also have a chef’s special sushi roll.”
Lin emphasizes that both lunch and dinner prices are the same.
“Some places charge more for dinner, but we don’t do that,” he said. “My opinion is that as long as the food quality is good, there shouldn’t be any extra charge for it. I’m offering good, fresh quality food for a reasonable price.”
The restaurant offers a special Bubble tea which, according to Lin, is popular in larger cities.
“Students like it,” he said, “and I have a lot of older folks wanting to try it. We have it in different flavors.”
Lin said because he’s been in the restaurant over 30 years, he quickly learns what diners like or what they don’t like. Because of that, he’s able to adjust his menu to whatever the diner likes best.
Patrons can dine in at the restaurant and take advantage of the carry-out meals.
“I’m the cook, dishwasher and janitor,” said Lin. “And I always speak to everybody. The customer is the owner. The customers bring money to the restaurant so they’re the true owner.”
Lin has eight employees besides himself, his wife and their three sons.
His wife, Amber, helps as do their sons when they have time.
Eric is studying nursing at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. Matthew attends Jacksonville State University. He wants to be a pharmacist. Bryan is a junior at Oxford High School.
The family lives in Oxford. Lin is Chinese, but was born in South Korea. He speaks both Chinese and Korean.
The restaurant is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m.-10 p.m. It’s closed on Sunday.
Lin said he’s overwhelmed by the warm reception he’s received from patrons, including many JSU students, and city officials.
Contact Margaret at firstname.lastname@example.org.