Restaurant News & Reviews

Big changes planned for 5 Lexington restaurants, including one closed by health dept.

Five Lexington restaurant spots are about to see some changes. Here are the details:

Sakura, 1015 Winchester Road, was closed by the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department on Oct. 11 after scoring 59 on an inspection. It had been placed on health department probation in May. The restaurant has changed hands and plans to reopen soon after major changes, said new owner Frankie Zheng.

Zheng said Tuesday that he hopes they will have made the necessary changes to reopen soon. Zheng bought the restaurant, known for its half-priced sushi, from Johnny Lin, who is keeping the full-service Sakura Japanese Steak House that he opened last year on Nicholasville Road.

Zheng said they plan to update the kitchen and the sushi and hibachi menu but keep the name.

And the half-priced sushi.

“Oh yeah ... customers love the 50 percent sushi,” Zheng said

Texas Roadhouse, 3029 Richmond Road, will be relocating in 2020. Plans submitted with the city indicate that the restaurant will be moving across Richmond Road.

An 8,800-square-foot, 300-seat restaurant will be built on a new lot carved out of the enormous parking lot in front of the former Walmart. The store, which was Lexington’s first Walmart, closed in August 2018. The property was puchased by Don Franklin Auto Group.

The plan will come before the city planning commission on Nov. 14 before a timeline for the new restaurant can be set. No word yet on when construction might begin.

Johnny Carino’s, 135 Rojay Drive, will be coming down. The restaurant at Fayette Mall closed in 2017. Now, according to a plan filed with the city, developers want to demolish the building and build a new 5,738 square-foot building. The redevelopment plan still needs approval from the city so it’s unclear how soon the demolition could begin.

BurgerFi and Moe’s Southwest Grill, both at 141 Rojay Drive, also will be relocating. According to the redevelopment plan, once the Johnny Carino’s is gone and the new building constructed, BurgerFi and Moe’s will move in. The building at 141 Rojay will be converted to retail. The move likely will be sometime in 2020. BurgerFi opened its first Lexington location on Rojay in March 2016.