The history of Shinsei rolls back way before the June 2006 opening. It actually began before the owners Tracy Rathbun and Lynae Fearing opened the doors or even knew each other.
When Rathbun graduated from high school she took off for Austin to nab a degree in Psychology. While in school she took on her first restaurant job as a waitress and manager of Lakeview Cafe in Austin. Little did she know that experience would come in handy later in life. Later as in after she served as Food and Beverage Manager of the Hyatt Regency in Dallas. Later as in after the ten years she spent at Boardwalk Porsche as General Sales Manager.
Fearing’s foray into the restaurant industry was a bit sweeter, working first at a Dairy Queen in Whitehouse, Texas before moving on to bigger plates at Primo’s, Sfuzzi, Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse and Fog City Diner, all in Dallas. She further developed her palate traveling the world with her ex-husband, Chef Dean Fearing, dining along the way in Italy, France and Japan to name a few.
It was after these two bright restaurateurs met at a chef’s wives function that they became close and often dined at what was to become Shinsei, the former sushi restaurant Yamaguchi’s. This was in 2006 and has since became a go-to hot spot for sushi and other Japanese dishes.
Enter in Chef de Cuisine TJ Lengnick, who has an long career with Dallas restaurants including an internship under Doug brown at the Anatole’s Nana. After graduation Lengnick spent time in the kitchens at restaurants such as Pappas Bros. Steakhouse, BLT Steak, Central 214 and Jasper’s. He was eventually hired as chef of Shinsei in 2008 with a brief gig at Whiskey Cake before finally returning back to his post.
Lengnick takes his inspiration using simple ingredients that are fresh and local to create some powerful flavors that stand out boldly on the plate.
For sushi the ladies tapped into a local sushi chef who we featured earlier today, Shuji “Elvis” Sugawara. Born and raised in Shiogama, Miyago in Japan, but moved to Texas to study English at the University of North Texas. Elvis has worked at some of the finer sushi houses in Dallas including Teppo and Tei Tei Robata Bar.
In recent months they have started to bring on a party on the third Saturday from 9:30 to closing featuring a local DJ in the lounge in what they call Shinsei After Dark. Celebrate happy hour during the week from 5 to 7 with $5 specialty cocktails.
We recently enjoyed some of the new menu items that the team at Shinsei lined up, and today we are able to share some of the new dishes we sampled. Our favorites include the Katina Crispy Rice, which is spicy tuna with sriracha and slices of jalapeno. The Herb and Chili Tempura Lobster served on mango rice noodle salad with japaeno vinaigrette is super special as well. be sure to try the Oven Roasted Mahi Mahi served in a bowl of brothy maitake mushrooms, sauteed greens and bacon tamarind jam.
Shinsei | 7713 Inwood Rd, Dallas | 214.352.0005