Industry News | October 10, 2013

Wahoo’s Fish Taco Rides the Wave to Tokyo

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As part of the 25-year anniversary celebration of Wahoo’s Fish Taco, a community mainstay and worldwide pop culture phenomenon since 1988, the company announces the opening of its first international franchise in Tokyo. Located on the eighth floor of the DiverCity Tokyo Plaza, the new restaurant offers all of Wahoo’s signature flavors including charbroiled or spicy marinated fish, chicken, steak, and tofu fillings in a variety of items such as tacos, burritos, bowls, salads, and the original fish taco. The distinguishing factors of the Japan restaurant include smaller portion sizes catering to local preference and a rooftop skate park at the top of the building.

“Throughout the years, our visiting Japanese fan base has totally embraced our Wahoo’s surf, skate, and snow cultures, and have been sharing the Wahoo’s brand experience with their friends and family at home,” says Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo’s. “When the opportunity arose to open a location in Japan with an experienced restaurant owner, we knew it was time to bring our unique food and lifestyle overseas.”

The new location in Japan serves as a testament to Wahoo’s growing success as the company continues to reach new markets and gain more devoted fans. The restaurant features an eclectic Mexican/Brazilian/Asian menu with the Hawaiian North Shore vibe that has made Wahoo’s a popular choice. This location will represent the philosophies, recipes, and business model of all Wahoo’s restaurants throughout the U.S.

With a presence from the West Coast of California, Hawaii, and Nevada, through the Midwest in Colorado, Texas, and Nebraska, and to New York for the East Coast, Wahoo’s is a neighborhood staple across the U.S. and beyond—especially on college campuses. This year, Wahoo’s celebrated by introducing several new menu items. The Citrus Slaw Taco offers a choice of fillings (chicken breast, carnitas, fish, or carne asada) with slaw ingredients of cabbage, cilantro, onions, and carrots tossed in lime juice and olive oil, and the SCReaM’n Burrito contains the combination dubbed “Spicy-Chicken-Rice-Mushroom” and Mr. Lee’s Chili Sauce.

There are currently 70 locations throughout the nation—10 with full-service bars to accompany the menu. The fast food chain expects to open new locations in Las Vegas; San Jose, California; Sacramento, California; Long Island, New York; Arizona; and Pennsylvania.