Mihoko Obunai-Truex announced today that she will take over as chef and owner of Repast Restaurant — a position she has shared with her husband, Joe Truex, since the restaurant’s inception in 2006.
Truex will leave by the end of the month to pursue a new Atlanta-area venture.
“The menu will have a different format with a lot of new dishes,” Obunai-Truex said, “but we’ll still keep a number of the Repast signatures, such as our crab cake and hanger steak.”
I got a look at the new menu, which is a fair bit less expensive than the current menu and thick with small plates and dishes to share. A number of items reflect Obunai-Truex’s Japanese heritage, such as tako-yaki (soft dumplings with octopus) and blistered shishito peppers with Okinawan sea salt. Other new dishes will include pork tonkatsu with shiso cheese, miso-cured foie gras with sansho pepper, and pork belly steamed buns with house-made ramp kimchi. Meat and seafood entrees will be served with sauces but no vegetable garnishes, a number of which will be available à la carte.
“It’s like when you buy a bikini bathing suit these days,” said Obunai-Truex. “You buy the top and bottom separately so it fits just right.”
The restaurant will also dramatically upgrade its selection of Japanese spirits — sake and shochu — served with the traditional overflow in a masu box placed over a saucer.
“We want Repast to be a place where you can come in for a nice drink and a few small plates,” she said.
The new menu will debut sometime around June 1.
Since its opening, Repast has earned many awards, including “Best New Restaurant” from Esquire and “Rising Star Chef” from Starchefs.com.
As I’ve disclosed before, the Truexes are my neighbors and personal friends.