When Kamikaze rolled out to the public a couple of years ago as a food truck, their food—conceived by chef and owner Nic Riccardi—immediately made a splash. Food that infuses Mexican and Asian ingredients was a concept so unique it helped them grow in the blink of an eye. Now, in 2021, Kamikaze has moved to the “brick-and-mortar” method, setting up shop in a building on the corner of Comanche and Wyoming.

The building Kamikaze is housed in is very sleek and modern compared to the surrounding area. Sharing the space with other businesses, Kamikaze stands out from the rest. With mouthwatering food and a cool environment, it’s a place I’ve found myself constantly going to. When you get a look at their diverse menu, you’re going to be standing there, jaw-dropped, anticipating the arrival of your dish. To hear how Riccardi developed his ideas to create his menu was a delight, to say the least.

“When I was growing up, my father was a chef. For cash on the weekends, he worked at a Chinese restaurant, so he would always bring home those ingredients,” Riccardi says. “What we would do is infuse those ingredients into what we had in our household. The big one was when he brought home eggroll papers. When he brought those, we would put ham and cheese, or chocolate and marshmallow, even leftovers, really whatever we had left in the house. Roll it into an eggroll and call it dinner.”

Riccardi’s childhood experiences and ambition to develop them into an idea surely paid off. Items like the Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Eggroll or the Bacon Jam Mac N’ Cheese Eggroll helped Kamikaze’s fame rise at an impressive rate. If you haven’t had the pleasure of tasting one of these succulent rolls, I definitely recommend it. At first you’ll question the combination, but after the first bite, you’ll probably be ordering another round.

One of the more fascinating concepts of Kamikaze is how fast they’ve been able to transition from a food truck to a brick-and-mortar. It’s a business model many local establishments are moving to, and their experience has been smooth. However, when you’re dealing with other entities, it can always be a little rocky.

“While we were doing the food truck, we actually had a pop-up Downtown with another business. After three months we quickly realized it wasn’t a good fit,” Riccardi explains. “It’s a little difficult when you’re working with another business, and you’re trying to develop that relationship. After that, we moved to our current location, and we’ve been here ever since. It was a little rocky at first, just because there were a couple of businesses rotating out of here, but it worked out. It doesn’t make sense to fight each other. We all want one thing, and that’s to make people happy.”

It’s funny. I found Kamikaze’s new place because I ate at their food truck, and that’s how the owners of the building found them too. The development of a loyal following is keeping Riccardi busy. If you haven’t become a fan yet, head over and you’ll become all about it.

Kamikaze Kitchen

3517 Wyoming Blvd. NE Suite D

Neighborhood: Midtown

Category: Asian/Mexican fusion

Phone: (505) 900-8296

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Cade Guererro

Cade is young journalist who has worked at publication in Austin, Santa Fe and Albuquerque. He focuses on the cultural topics of Albuquerque.

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