May 18, 2022

Japanese restaurant offering premium seafood and steaks opens in Arden

Murasaki’s “Picante” sushi roll is made with spicy amberjack, cilantro, and cucumber and topped with salmon, yellow amberjack, avocado, jalapeño ponzu, serrano pepper, and sriracha.

A new Japanese restaurant aimed at raising the bar for local sushi, ramen and tapas offerings is now open in South Asheville.

Murasaki Asheville will make its official debut with a grand opening on January 28 at 200 Julian Lane in Arden.

Murasaki’s bountiful menu includes seafood tapas, a dozen ramen and noodle dishes, traditional and signature sushi rolls, and dishes straight from the hibachi grill. Bento boxes, donburi, sashimi, and agemono and yakimono entrees are some of the categories on the menu.

Menu prices range from higher-cost, upscale entrees to lunch specials under $20.

On January 28, customers dining at Murasaki can receive a free spring roll, egg roll, or kani pocket appetizer. Also, the restaurant will offer to buy a large hot sake, get a free refill offer.

Murasaki is the latest venture from owner Putra Negara, who owns Fuji Hibachi in Johnson City, Osaka Sushi & Asian Cuisine in Cherokee, and Sake Sushi & Hibachi in Spartanburg. The Asheville location is on the former site of the Pomodoros Café, which closed in September 2021.

“We’ve turned the place into a very relaxing vibe for people who want to hang out at night. We have all kinds of sakes and wines,” Negara said. “The patio will be open during the summer, and we will eventually have live music on the weekends.”

Culinary news: Dine out or stay home, the cost of food continues to rise in 2022. Here’s why.

One of the stars of the menu is the fresh bluefin tuna. Red tuna otoro is cut from the belly of the fish which is rich and buttery and high in omega-3 fats.

“We use fresh bluefin tuna for our inventory,” Negara said. “Yeah, it’s different from other places in town. People usually don’t buy that kind of fish because it’s so expensive.

The Smoke Toro is made with smoked hickory wood chips and served with smoked soy sauce and fresh wasabi and costs $23.

Tonkotsu pork ramen with chashu pork belly from Murasaki in Arden, January 27, 2022.

Tonkotsu pork ramen with chashu pork belly from Murasaki in Arden, January 27, 2022.

“It’s something different that the city doesn’t have – a smoke toro,” he said. “The dish comes in a sashimi dish, literally in a small glass, and then you smoke it. It’s more like a presentation for the client.

A platter of seasonal bluefin is also available, which is served with nine pieces of fresh cut akami, chutoro and otoro, at $45.

Murasaki fish is always fresh and never frozen, Negara said.

COVID-19 etiquette tips for restaurants: Rules of engagement for dining out during the pandemic

Another premium item is wagyu A5, a premium quality Kobe beef imported from Japan.

The Legend of the Ten Rings is made with seared A5 wagyu, truffle salt, green onion and chili thread on a lobster mixture and served with fried asparagus and Japanese mayonnaise. It is listed at $24.

Murasaki’s “The Legend of the Ten Rings” sushi roll is made with lobster, fried asparagus, Japanese mayo and topped with A5 wagyu, truffle salt, green onions and chili threads.

Pork Chasu Ramen is a top-selling dish in the other restaurant. It consists of pork belly prepared in Asian cuisine style served in Tonkotsu broth with vegetables, Shoyu egg and fish cake. Hearty ramen and noodle bowls range from $15-18.

An Omakase-style dinner where the diner trusts Chef Arsa to prepare a menu without seeing him will be available for reservation later.

If you are going to

What: Murasaki Asheville

Or: 200 Julian Lane, Arden

Hours: 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. lunch and 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. dinner Monday to Friday

12pm-10.30pm Saturday

12pm-9pm Sunday

Information: Follow on Facebook and murasakiasheville.comthe pages will be launched soon.

Tiana Kennell is a food and gastronomy reporter for the Asheville Citizen Times, part of the USA Today Network. Email her at or follow her on Twitter/Instagram @PrincessOfPage.

This article originally appeared on Asheville Citizen Times: Murasaki’s, an upscale sushi and ramen restaurant, opens in Arden