May 20, 2015 03:28 PM

The former location of Island Tan in River Ranch's Town Square will be the new home of Rock-n-Sake.
Photo by Leslie Turk

The restaurant gods have heard you, residents of River Ranch, and you will soon have your very own sushi restaurant in the center of your universe.

Rock-n-Sake Bar & Sushi will open its first Lafayette location, third Louisiana-wide, at 107 Stonemont Road between Romacelli and the newly re-christened De Gaulle Square Bistro and Bar, forming a tidy constellation of restaurant stars.

As of this week, Rock-n-Sake is under contract to purchase the building at 107 Stonemont Road, a deal brokered between Van Eaton & Romero commercial Realtor David Gleason and River Ranch Realty. Gleason and his team represent the building owner, Dr. Mohit Srivastava, and Cecil Little with River Ranch Realty is working with Rock-n-Sake.

The approximately 3,000-square-foot building is the former location of Island Tan in the traditional neighborhood development's Town Square.

The deal ends Rock-n-Sake's near two-year search to enter the Lafayette marketplace, according to Srivastava, and gives River Ranch a high-end sushi restaurant to call its own.

A Rock-n-Sake official contacted for this story was not immediately available for comment.

The building provides the ideal setting for Rock-n-Sake's debut, Srivastava says, with a parking lot across the street near City Club at River Ranch and street parking available along Stonemont Road. Rock-n-Sake plans to remake the former tanning salon into the chic contemporary likeness of its other two locations, the original in New Orleans' Warehouse District and the second in Baton Rouge on Perkins Road. Construction turnaround is expected to be rapid, with the new kid arriving on the block by this fall.

Known for its energetic and funky dining atmosphere, Rock-n-Sake puts more "bar" into your average sushi bar, featuring '80s music nights, the Wednesday Wine Down and house cocktails like the Japanese/Brazilian mash up Sake Caipirinha using premium sake in place of the traditional cachaca. Rock-n-Sake also hosts sushi making classes both in-house and off-site for those dreaming of becoming the American Jiro.

Leaning on freshly sourced, premium fish with a twist of modern American dining, Rock-n-Sake will be competitive in pricing and experience with crosstown sushi trailblazer Tsunami. Its offerings vary from the usual raw suspects to locally inspired plates like the LSU or New Orleans roll. Plating is whimsical, featuring items like the dragon roll shaped into the eponymous mythical beast, complete with horns and a breath of fiery Sriracha sauce.

It's likely a River Ranch, Hub City or Ragin' Cajun roll is in the works. Another prayer sure to be answered.



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