It was a year ago that Yoshinoya finally had the ribbon cutting for its Asiana Grill concept in what used to be a regular ol' Yoshinoya on State College in Fullerton. The store, which touted “an exhibition style open kitchen,” was supposed to be an upmarket Yoshinoya, where you could choose your protein and have it on plate, as a salad, in a soup, or as a sandwich.
It borrowed a little from the Chipotle model, and was perhaps designed to be a preemptive strike against Chipotle's Asian spin-off ShopHouse before it planted roots here. When Asiana Grill opened, there were grand plans to make this store the model for possible franchising.
But now Fullerton's Asiana Grill is no more. It has transformed itself back to a regular ol' Yoshinoya.
There remains another Asiana Grill concept in existence–near USC–and the Asiana Grill Facebook page is coy about the reason why the seminal location was changed back to a Yoshinoya. In fact it hints at more Asiana Grills in the future. “We are looking to open more locations all over…stay tuned!”, it said to someone asking about the closure.