SushiNero: New Japanese-Spanish fusion restaurant opening soon in Miamisburg

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

SushiNero, a new Japanese-Spanish fusion restaurant with sushi and small plates, is opening soon in Miamisburg.

Owner Lauren Stites said the restaurant will be located at 20 S. First St. in the former space of Watermark. She is leasing that space in addition to the former home of Backwater Voodoo at 103 S. Second St.

SushiNero is expected to open in July with sushi, Japanese food and Spanish tapas. Stites said there are many similarities between Japan and Spain in regards to the use of seafood like squid and octopus in their cuisines that they plan to play into. The chef at SushiNero is originally from Japan and had lived in Spain for a period of time.

The restaurant will start off heavy with sushi and will have a variety of rolls including California rolls and spicy tuna rolls. Stites said she would love to have poke in the future. An example of a Spanish tapa that will be on the menu is carpaccio, thinly sliced raw fish served in a vinaigrette with microgreens.

“I’ve been in the service industry for many years, since I was like 22,” Stites said. “I’ve lived in a lot of different places and we were just missing food that we wanted to eat, so we thought we would make a place that had all of those things.”

Stites is originally from South Vienna and now lives in Troy. She said she has bartended all over the country from Put-in-Bay to a rooftop bar in San Francisco, California where she honed in on her cocktail skills.

“I think living in a small town everyone dreams of big city life, so I just thought I wanted to see what was out there,” Stites said.

She returned to the region a few months before Covid and described this recent restaurant opportunity as the “perfect storm.”

SushiNero has been approved for its D-1 and D-3 liquor permits, so the restaurant will start off with liquor and beer. Customers can expect a lot of tequila-focused cocktails and fun infusions like cinnamon sticks infused in sake that can then be made into a sangria. Stites is looking forward to infusing Spanish things into rice wine or making rice washed bourbon and using it in cocktails.

Wine is something Stites said she is passionate about, but the restaurant will not have it until they receive their D-2 liquor permit.

SushiNero will be a casual restaurant for people to grab a glass of wine and eat sushi with their friends. Stites has been working on cosmetic updates to the space for about four weeks.

She does have future plans for the Second Street space. Stites said her dream is to make it into an omakase experience with a beverage program that’s sake-focused.

Stites is looking forward to sharing her passion with the Miamisburg community.

“I love talking to customers. I love making that connection and seeing what people are into and morphing our cocktail list and our menu to what people are looking for,” Stites said. “Yes, it’s a passion of mine and we want to bring the food we want to eat, but we want to expose other people in Miamisburg to what we love.”

For more information and updates on SushiNero, visit the restaurant’s Facebook page.

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