The restaurant group has just opened a restaurant in London’s Clapham Junction and says this will be followed up by new restaurants this spring.
One will be a new concept for the brand with a takeaway format on the ground floor and a Korean BBQ restaurant above while the other will be a takeaway-only restaurant under a new Yori Go brand.
Yori, which runs Korean restaurants in Piccadilly, Covent Garden and Wimbledon, opened the 55-cover restaurant in Clapham last month, with group executive chef Park Junchul in charge of the menu. The 15,000sq ft restaurant serves BBQ food for dine-in (when permitted) as well as takeaway on the ground floor with a Korean-style bar in the basement.
Dishes on the menu include rice topped with beef bulgogi with mixed sauteed vegetables; Korean rice cake, fish cake, ramen noodles and vegetables; and soy garlic fried chicken.
The decision to open sites outside of central London is a result of Yori’s two central London sites having been hit hard by the Coronavius pandemic, says Yori founder Jongsoon Kim. “Our two main restaurants in central London have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus, but the Wimbledon one is making a profit, which is why we want to open in more residential areas.”
Jongsoon Kim says the company is looking to follow two strategies in the future: to keep opening more BBQ restaurants under the Yori brand and to seek more A1 sites to open smaller takeaway-only venues. He says the company is currently seeking more sites, with areas such as Stratford a target, with a target of seven opening this year.
Yori is owned by JS Holding Group and started life in 2016 with a BBQ restaurant in Piccadilly. As well as four Yori restaurants the group also operates Korean dessert café Cake and Bingsoo and Japanese restaurant Nori in New Malden, and Japanese dessert café Café Mori in Wimbledon. It also runs nail bar The Bless and Korean retail shop Mace in New Malden.