ELV has it on good authority* that this was the exact, verbatim conversation that took place as Bocho was being conceptualized:
Owner: You know what downtown needs? A sushi bar!
Consulting Chef: Yeah! I remember that John Curtas-guy talking to people at the Downtown Project years ago and saying a sushi establishment would kill here. I think he even referred them to some top-drawer Japanese restaurateurs who might be interested.
O: Who needs top-drawer Japanese? Anyone can do sushi these days.
CC: Yeah, but we can’t do just any old, all-you-can-eat sushi. Our clientele is much too sophisticated for that.
O: You’re right! We need to dress it up and make it hipster sushi! By featuring all kinds of hip items like kaarage chicken, yellowtail ceviche, gyoza and all kinds of with-it “specialty rolls” like salmon skin roll and Philadelphia roll and….
CC: Uhhh….hate to tell you this, but those aren’t all that special.
O: I know, but our hipster clientele will feel so uber-cool being at a downtown sushi bar, they probably won’t notice.
CC: I guess you’re right….and it’s not like we’re going to have a lot of competition. The minute we open we’ll be downtown’s best sushi bar!
O: But what about a name? The name has to absolutely SCREAM coolness! It can’t be anything Japanese or boring….like “Yakuza” or “Anime” or “Seppuku Sushi.” The name has to positively scream downtown cool!
CC: I’ve got it! How about we give it a Mexican name? That’ll really confuse people. How cool is that?
O: Perfect! Everyone will want to eat here because no one will know what it is! Only a select few will be hip to the vibe. And everyone who doesn’t get it will beg to find out why a standard issue sushi operation sounds like a taco stand. And once they figure things out, they’ll be so impressed with themselves they’ll forget they’re eating the same stuff they can get all over town at places they can actually recognize.
CC: Yeah, but who wants to do that anymore?
O: It’s marketing gold, I tell you. Gold! With this as a template, there’s no telling how many Millennials we can snare.
CC: Wanna know my next idea?
O: I can’t wait.
CC: A dim sum parlor called Chez François.
O: Perfect. I’ll get Hseih on the phone right now.
* By “good authority” we mean ELV’s “fertile imagination.”