The Asian Infusion
1. Standouts include The Crownery Chinese Restaurant (Hockessin, 239-3825), a trendsetter for diners craving more than mom-and-pop shops with lo mein. Longtime customers know to ask for the “secret” Chinese menu.
2–3. Okura (Hockessin, 239-8486) and Kyoto (Wilmington, 368-9882) were brave pioneers on the sushi front. Customers fell in love with the hospitable sushi bars, traditional shoji-laced atmosphere and fresh fish. (Explore the non-sushi side of Kyoto’s menu for dishes to share.)
4. Many customers crave a mix of Asian influences. Bamboo House (Newark, 368-9933) has a heavy list of sushi options, but the menu mainly sticks to Chinese delicacies, including soup dumplings.
5. Rice (Dover, 678-1328) brought creative Chinese and Japanese dishes, served in a contemporary dining room, to the state capital. It proved so popular that it inspired a Stanton-area offshoot, also named Rice (Wilmington, 999-7423). The restaurants promise minimal salt and fresh vegetables.
6. Blending Chinese and Japanese dishes is a natural for the owners of Takumi (North Wilmington, 658-8887). Head chef Hideyuki Okubo is from Japan, and wife, Jessie, is Chinese. The couple met while working at Utage, which once occupied the same space in Independence Mall.
7–10. Le Shio Asian Fusion Cuisine (North Wilmington, 888-0145) and Jasmine (North Wilmington, 479-5618), both on Concord Pike, bring Thai dishes and craft cocktails to the multicultural fusion. Jasmine has a spacious sister restaurant in Sussex County, Saketumi (Rehoboth Beach, 645-2818). Kenny’s Pan Asian Cuisine (Bear, 838-1725) also blends Chinese, Japanese and Thai influences.
11–12. Mikimotos Asian Grill & Sushi Bar (Wilmington, 656-8638) and Stingray Sushi Bar + Asian Latino Grill (Rehoboth Beach, 227-6476) are siblings who aren’t afraid to shake things up. At Stingray, order tempura mahi tacos with a side of guacamole and sea urchin.
13. Potstickers Asian Grill & Sushi Bar (Newark, 731-0188) incorporates a European sensibility. Chef Li Shih, who opened Potstickers with wife, Elizabeth, in 2006, studied at the Sushi Chef Institute and the Culinary Institute of America.
14. The Cultured Pearl (Rehoboth Beach, 227-8493) gets major props for introducing sushi to the beach. In warm weather, nibble edamame on the top deck next to canals filled with koi. Along with sushi and Japanese dishes, the menu has selections with Korean and Thai influences.
15. Just a few streets over, Confucius (Rehoboth Beach, 227-3848) has been satisfying beachcombers’ cravings for Peking duck and Hunan-style spicy dishes since 2004. Visit on Sundays for the buffet.
16. The town is also home to Lily Thai (Rehoboth Beach, 277-3348), owned by Lily Thamibutra, who once worked at her sister’s now-closed restaurant, Seaside Thai.
17. The beach in the last few years saw the opening of Bangkok Thai Cuisine (Lewes, 644-2223), which is a second location. The original is in Dover (736-1606).
18. Rasa Sayang Malaysian Cuisine (North Wilmington, 543-5286) features familiar dishes, such as pad Thai and spring rolls, and bolder flavors from surrounding countries.
19. On the Wilmington Riverfront, Ubon (Wilmington, 656-1706) shares the Jeenwong family’s best recipes.
20. Delaware lost Saigon Vietnam Restaurant in Newark, one of the first to offer the cuisine. But it gained Zen Saigon (Bethany Beach, 616-1957).
21. In Trolley Square, Southeast Kitchen (Wilmington, 691-7728) covers a lot of bases, from Burma to the Philippines.
22–23. Delaware has a few Korean restaurants, including Korean Barbecue & Sushi Bar (Newark, 455-9100) and Kahl-Bee Korean Restaurant (Elsmere, 998-4310).