Favorite Sushi Spot Scarred by Flames

Courtesy AFD An Alameda firefighter is illuminated against the night sky as he works to put out a fire at one of Alameda’s longest-standing and most-popular Japanese restaurants.

Restaurant owner, 92, says this will only make her stronger

Faith Akiko Yamato will celebrate her 93rd birthday in March. Instead of looking forward to the occasion, though, she will be spending her time helping rebuild Kamakura restaurant that she’s owned since 1981. 

According to Alameda Fire Department (AFD) Capt. Jim Colburn, at 4:13 a.m., Friday, Jan. 13, 21 firefighters responded to the report of a fire at the restaurant located at Santa Clara Avenue and Broadway. It took them 10 minutes to get the fire under control, and an additional 20 minutes to extinguish the blaze. The fire damaged the kitchen and smoke played a role in further damaging the popular restaurant. 

According to Colburn, smoke also damaged some adjacent businesses. The fire did not spread beyond the restaurant, however. 

AFD is still investigating the cause of the fire, which may have started either in a malfunctioning ice-making machine or in a nearby refrigeration system. The cost to repair the damage also remains unknown. 

No one was injured, Colburn said. 

The family is not sure when the popular restaurant will re-open. A Go-Fund-Me page has been set up to help the Yamatos and their employees. See the related story below.