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White knight roll | © Ganbei
White knight roll | © Ganbei
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Discover Ganbei In Lexington, South Carolina

Picture of Henry Oliver
Updated: 1 December 2016
Although Lexington is a city with a wealth of places to eat and a diverse range of cuisines from around the world, Ganbei is a culinary jewel. We caught up with the owner of Ganbei to discover some of the secrets behind his successful restaurant.


When did you first open Ganbei, and how has it developed over the years?

Ganbei opened in November 2011 and has rapidly grown over the years, providing consistently high-quality food and service. We take our customers’ feedback very seriously, and it has helped us improve greatly over the years.

What’s Ganbei’s signature dish?

Definitely the Ganbei Roll and the Ganbei Fried Rice! The Ganbei Roll is a great roll for those who are trying sushi for the first time. It’s our signature roll, containing tempura shrimp, cream cheese, crab, and avocado, topped with torched spicy crab mix and drizzled with our signature sauce.

The Ganbei Fried Rice is for those that love a little spicy kick to their food. It contains marinated teriyaki chicken and beef tossed with our Sriracha-flavored rice. Everyone who has tried it, loves it!

What are the most fundamental differences between Asian and American cuisines?

They are both very different cuisines from opposite sides of the hemisphere. Different Asian countries and regions have different cooking styles. If you are comparing sushi and American cuisine, sushi is something that is lighter and typically oil-free. Sushi allows you to taste the very natural flavors of the ingredients.


What inspires you to work towards your goals? Do you have any role models you aspire to?

My in-laws and my wife are my role models. They have been in the industry for over 20 years and know the ins and outs of making an exquisite meal. The idea that there is always room for improvement pushes me to try harder and be better for my customers. We don’t compare ourselves to our competitors; we always strive to reach our best because we want happy customers. The compliments of our patrons put a smile on our chef’s face.

Sweet or savory?

A balance between the two is perfect, just like the yin and yang.


Do your ingredients come from local and sustainable sources?

We try to locally source our food so that it is fresh but some items such as high grade sushi fish can only be found from certain providers. So we import fish from our freshest source.


Where would you advise our culture-loving readers to visit in Lexington?

Keg Cowboy. Chef Brian creates some really interesting dishes there at an affordable price.

What does the future hold for Ganbei?

We will always be here to serve our customers. We also constantly research to see what’s new in the market and what new items we can incorporate into our menu. One day, we hope to expand so that we can accommodate our customers that live in Forest Acres and the Northeast.

Local Favorite 2016


Ganbei is one of the winners of The Culture Trip’s Lexington Local Favorite 2016 Award. The Local Favorite badge is awarded to our favorite local towns, restaurants, artists, galleries, and everything in between. We are passionate about showcasing popular local talents on a global scale, so we have cultivated a carefully selected, but growing community.