ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Kogi Asian Buffet
800 Northway Dr.
$13 per plate
11 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week
Whenever I hear about a new restaurant in town, my curiosity is inevitably piqued -- but then I visit only to discover that the place is inaccessible for a month due to its sudden popularity. One recent opening I stopped by, however, was far more low-key.
Kogi Asian Buffet sits in a quiet industrial area near the Northway Mall, just northwest of the sprawling Anchorage Daily News campus. Its black building with orange trim used to house a Royal Fork buffet restaurant; it isn’t all that ostentatious, and a grand-opening banner hanging near the road helped point it out from the street more easily. There’s not a lot of parking for a buffet restaurant, but it was fairly easy to find a space on the sunny Friday when I visited.
The black-and-orange décor scheme continues inside, with muted lighting and classical music lending a relaxed air to the dining area. Several well-lit tables present the buffet offerings, which include a variety of Asian entrees, soups, sushi and side dishes, as well as a small selection of Western items and desserts. There isn’t a proper salad bar, but a generous selection of finger-food fruits and veggies goes a long way to scratch the produce itch. Kogi has been open for about a week with a grand opening scheduled for June 8, and I was able to purchase a lunch buffet ($12.99, available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday) from the cashier immediately after walking in.