Upscale Japanese Kuro Opens at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel
The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino-Hollywood unveiled Kuro, a sophisticated Japanese craft kitchen, March 28.
Located inside the hotel and overlooking the property’s remodeled pool, Kuro gives diners an interactive dining experience. Designed by David Mexico Design Group, Kuro features an open dining room, chef’s table (omakase bar), sushi bar with view into the hot kitchen and pastry section, in addition to two private dining rooms and an alfresco dining patio.
The farm-fresh Japanese menu offers new style, handcrafted creations by Kuro’s Executive Chef Alex Becker, who also serves as the resort’s creative culinary director. Chef Becker’s cuisine applies classic Japanese techniques to contemporary, artisanal creations using both locally sourced and fresh imported ingredients direct from Japan.
Chef Becker worked for the Nobu empire for nearly a decade, opening its restaurants in Hawaii, Los Angeles, and New York City (Nobu 57) before joining SBE’s Katsuya as corporate Executive Chef. Executive Sushi Chef Shuji Hiyakawa was a protégé of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and presides over the compelling sushi offerings at Kuro.
Spearheading the concept is the property’s vice president of food and beverage Justin Wyborn who has nearly 20 years of hospitality experience, including 14 years with the Nobu brand, opening eight locations worldwide and overseeing operations for locations on the West Coast.
The expansive menu encompasses an assortment of selections and sushi including maki, nigiri and sashimi. Using an authentic Japanese charcoal grill, Kuro’s Robata dishes include Chicken Momo with yuzu kosho paste and olive oil and Wagyu Tacos with spicy cilantro, soy shallots, and aji Amarillo aioli.
Land and Sea sections offer creative dishes using traditional ingredients. Standouts include Salmon Cartoccio with mixed mushrooms, spicy tomato salsa, and kimizu sauce and Koji Lamb with cauliflower, kabocha croquette, and blueberry demi.
For Desserts, Pastry Chef Ross Evans created a beautifully balanced menu complementing Kuro’s savory selections while embracing the technical precision and clean flavors that Japanese cuisine is known for. Must-tries include the Chocolate Hazelnut Bar with spiced ganache, strawberry gel, and sesame brittle and the Apple Tobanyaki with soy caramel apples with mocha, roasted pecans, and yamazaki ice cream.
At the helm of the innovative cocktail program is mixologist Jared Boller. Handcrafted cocktails showcase fresh Japanese ingredients in modern recipes and are divided by the five flavor profiles—sweet, savory, bitter, salty, and umami.
Designed by the David Mexico Design Group, Kuro features a theater-style, open concept design in the 240-seat space.
Guests enter Kuro from the resort lobby, gliding by a wall comprised of 100,000 hand-placed sea shells. Elements of land and sea are reinforced throughout the space, with rows of driftwood on the walls and ceiling imitating waves.
Floor to ceiling bay windows line the perimeter of the 9,500-square-foot restaurant, bringing the outside in. The airy dining room offers a variety of seating options, from the cypress wood communal table and boardwalk oak tables to long banquettes and rounded booths overlooking the pool.
The sushi bar offers an unbroken sightline into the kitchen; adjacent to the sushi bar are two private dining rooms, one featuring an elevated Chef’s Table with the other doubling as the glass-enclosed wine cellar.
Kuro’s poolside terrace façade incorporates imaginative interactions where guests can dine at tables positioned atop a stunning glass floor with water flowing underneath.