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"I wonder why he opened a restaurant," Bob said as Casey ventured off, "instead of going to New York to become an actor."
I later asked chef Terry Barkley the same question. "Casey loves everything Japanese," Barkley answered. "He loves the food, the culture, the style."
Has he ever been to Japan?
"No," Barkley said. "But he has been to Hawaii. That's where he got the idea for a robata restaurant."
And his father does, I should point out, sell Toyotas, which are from Japan.
But who gives a damn about where the inspiration comes from? The important thing is that Nara has style, flair and a divine bowl of chili. And if that makes it the hottest new restaurant in town, nothing else matters for now.