Carle Place's famed Shiro of Japan closes after 50 years of service
Five decades of Long Island food history came to an end Saturday night as Shiro of Japan in Carle Place shut its doors for good.
Ever since Shiro of Japan announced its closing, the place was packed. However, the evening was not about saying farewell but more of a celebration of 50 years of good food and wonderful memories.
There were no tears at Shiro of Japan, only smiling faces and full stomachs. After 50 years, the Japanese steak house made its final hibachi shrimp, its last batches of fried rice and its last dinners for faithful customers.
Marie Favara, of Bay Shore, went on some of her first dates with her now husband at Shiro.
"We come around almost every Valentine's Day, we come for birthdays, we came three times since they announced the closing," Favara said.
Shiro was an institution on Long Island, hosting more celebrations than can probably be counted. Its owners claim the title of first sushi bar on Long Island and hibachi style cooking.
Westbury resident Noreen Mormando dined at Shiro for a quarter century, sometimes once a week. She said it was all about the food and the people.
"It's a family and that's what makes it so special and makes it so hard to see them go," she said.
Sophia Huang did just about every job at Shiro and 14 years later, she managed the restaurant.
"We're like a family, the customers are like a family, the staff are like a family, it's just a special feeling when you come in here," Huang said.
Co-owner Joe Faccibene said 50 years, including surviving the pandemic, is an amazing run for a restaurant and the memories will last him a lifetime.
"People talk about their grandfather brought them here when they were 5 years old and now they're bringing their 5-year-olds, so there is history here and its great to hear the stories," Faccibene said.
The reason for the closing is because Shiro lost its lease.
The space will become medial offices.
The owners said they have not been able to find another suitable location, so they needed to close the current locale. They said, however, there is always hope for a second act.