Carmel’s first Korean restaurant is scheduled to open Friday.
Carmel resident and chef Diana Dexter, along with her husband Paul Dexter, are opening Omoni, a fast and casual Korean grill, in the Meridian Village Plaza at 136th and Meridian streets.
The restaurant is in honor of Diana Dexter’s mother, who grew up in South Korea. Omoni means “mother” in Korean.
"She had a huge influence on me growing up, and cooking Korean food was a big part of it. She loved sharing her food and culture with others,” Diana Dexter said in a written statement. “We always spoke of opening a restaurant someday and planned our menu and how we’d run things. Although we lost her over a year ago, we still have what she shared with us—a love of Korean culture and food and a desire to share it with others."
Customers will be able to build their own bowls, with options including rice, noodles, salad greens and soft flour tortillas. Filling options include beef barbecue, spicy pork, grilled beef short rib, fried egg, grilled tofu and vegetable broth for the noodles. For vegetables, customers can choose from items including spinach, cucumbers, radish, bean sprouts, green onions and peppers.
Kimchi, which typically includes cabbage or Korean radish with garlic and red chili powder, will be made on site and offered as a side dish.
Other side dishes will include Jeon, a Korean pancake filled with various vegetables and served with a soy sauce dip; Chap Chae, a sweet potato noodle and vegetable stir fry; and various kinds of fried rice, soups and stews.
A dessert menu will offer Hotteok, a sweet pancake filled with melted brown sugar, cinnamon and optional nuts. Flavors will include green tea, sweet red bean, vanilla, chocolate and strawberry.
Omoni is located at 13710 N. Meridian St.
In other retail news:
Caplinger's Fresh Catch is opening a second location in the suburbs. The seafood restaurant and market announced Thursday on its Facebook page that it would be partnering with Broccoli Bills to open a new restaurant on the deli, produce and bakery shop's property at 15009 Gray Road in Noblesville. It is expected to open by summer. The existing Caplinger's location is at 7460 N. Shadeland Ave.
• Carmel is also getting a new Japanese restaurant. Japanese Express has filed plans to open at 14580 River Road near the intersection of 146th Street in the new retail center under construction next to the Ricker’s convenience store.
• A kickboxing studio is also planning to open in that growing retail center at 14570 River Road. I Love Kickboxing, or ILKB, is a franchise based in Merrick, New York that offers a variety of group and private kickboxing classes.
• Potbelly is opening its first northern suburb location at 11529 Springmill Road within The Bridges in Carmel near 116th Street. The chain sandwich shop, which was founded in Chicago, will be in one of the new retail buildings planned for the development. Potbelly also has a location in downtown Indianapolis on Monument Circle.
• BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse will open its first location in Noblesville at 13003 Campus Parkway, near Hamilton Town Center. BJ’s, which is headquartered in Huntington Beach, California, also has restaurants in Greenwood and Avon. The menu offers a wide variety of items including sandwiches, tacos, burgers, pizza, pasta and craft beer. It also has a list of entrees with less than 795 calories.
• Sola Salon Studios is planning to open a new location in Carmel at Clay Terrace. The hair salon franchise, which is headquartered in Denver, will be located at 14179 Clay Terrace Boulevard. It also has one other location in Carmel, one in Fishers and one in Castleton.
• LG Nails will replace an Allstate Insurance office at 9243 E. 141st St. in Fishers, just to the west of State Road 37.