First it was a fire station.
Then it was De Rosa’s Brick Oven Pizza. Eventually the tall, slender building on Wilton Road became Neat: a coffee shop by day, wine bar at night.
Now the former Vigilant Firehouse — tucked between Bartaco and The ‘Port — will become OKO.
The Japanese restaurant has great promise. It’s the latest project for chef Brian Lewis, who draws raves for his innovative cuisine at The Cottage in Colonial Green.
Lewis has studied Japanese cooking techniques for many years. He’s layered Japanese influences into his cooking. But when he introduced the Okonomiyaki — a savory Japanese pancake filled with seasonally inspired ingredients — to the Cottage menu, he realized he was on to something special.
Guests loved the dish — “Japanese street food with some rarefied touches,” he calls the immediately popular dish.
But it’s not easy to say “Okonomiyaki” (unless you’re from Japan). So, in a non-tongue-twisting tribute, Lewis is calling his new venture OKO.
Lewis will of course include local ingredients on the OKO menu. An opening date has not yet been announced.
But the sign went up this afternoon.