The crew at Alberni Sushi at Victoria Quay have moved to Port Alberni from Winnipeg. Left to right, James, his father and owner Sung Hee Kang and chef Jung Back. (TERESA BIRD/ Alberni Valley News)

BIZ BEAT: New options for eating in Port Alberni

See what’s happening in the Port Alberni business community

BY TERESA BIRD

Alberni Valley News

When Sung Hee Kang decided to move his family from Winnipeg to Port Alberni and open a sushi restaurant, he never imagined the obstacles that would put his plan on hold for months.

Kang and his wife, son and daughter emigrated to Canada from Korea in 2016, settling in Winnipeg, Manitoba. There Kang learned the sushi restaurant business and when a great location at Victoria Quay in Port Alberni became available, Kang and his family saw an opportunity. That opportunity became Alberni Sushi.

“We wanted to live by the ocean again,” says Kang’s son Hyunseo, who goes by James and speaks for the family. “We wanted to be in a small town and this is a good location between the ferry and the west coast.”

So father and son and sushi chef Jung Back arrived in Port Alberni in March to renovate the restaurant location next to Capelli’s, with a planned opening for May. COVID-19 confounded those plans, but they were finally able to open the last week of August. Kang’s wife and daughter hope to join the family once they find a place to live.

Alberni Sushi restaurant offers dine in, take-out and delivery in town. They are open at 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. except Sunday when they close at 8 p.m. Call 778-419-1117 or find them on Facebook.

•••

Fresh Coast Market is a fresh new spot to pick up lunch, a snack or a meal to go. Located across from the Funk Trunk in North Port Alberni, Fresh Coast Market is a family affair. Juanita Erickson and her daughter Kara are business partners in the venture and Kara’s son Deon is joining the business as well.

Cooking for people is a family tradition. Juanita’s mother was a cook and Juanita has been involved in the food industry for 35 years. Coast Country Kitchen was Juanita’s most recent endeavour, run from her home. But it was time to expand.

“I was looking for a change and we saw a need for this type of food for seniors, people on the go. Everyone is so busy and they need homemade, healthy meals,” says Juanita.

She says the family feel extends to their staff, many of whom have been with her for many years.

“I can’t say enough about our staff. They have been through so much with everything going on,” says Juanita.

The market offers grab and go lunches, soups, sandwiches, salads and fresh meals along with homemade pies and baking. Frozen meals for seniors are available by pre-order. Check out the latest @freshcoastmarketPA or learn more at www.freshcoastmarket.ca . Call 778-421-4712 or email hello@freshmarket.ca.

•••

Alicia LaRue, who owns and operates Wind Rider Kiteboarding at China Creek Marina, is now offering beachside cabana accommodations to visitors. Coho Cabanas is a joint partnership with China Creek Campground. The two cabanas offer inlet views and are equipped with queen size beds and bar fridges. Learn more at www.cohocabanas.com.

•••

Coleman Meadows Farm has added Jersey cows to their water buffalo herd.

Now, in addition to shipping water buffalo milk for cheese, gelato and yogurt, they are also shipping out cow’s milk from the farm at 6670 Coleman Road. Stop by their farm gate market Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for fresh water buffalo dairy products and meats. For updates and information see their Facebook page.

•••

Surgeon Dr. James Ferguson has served the people of the Alberni Valley for 35 years.

Dr. Ferguson was born in Scotland and worked as a marine engineer before becoming a doctor. He earned his medical degree at the University of Toronto before practicing at West Coast General Hospital. An avid sailor and climber, Dr. Ferguson has sailed all seven oceans. ​

In a tribute on the Island Health website, colleague Dr. Robert O’Dwyer said Dr. Ferguson “was considered a lion amongst surgeons. He was calm in any emergency and definitely the most brilliant surgeon I’ve worked with.”

Dr. Sam Williams noted Dr. Ferguson’s impressive work ethic and energy “as a 78-year-old surgeon, he was phenomenal. He’s really is a star surgeon on the island.”

Dr. Ferguson served as chief of surgery at West Coast General until 2008. In December he stepped back from full-time practice, but continued to do part-time locum work until his retirement in July.

•••

Zackery Castellarin is a Red Seal journeyman carpenter who has just opened a new construction firm. Castellarin has several years experience and offers new build construction, renovations, formwork and interior and exterior finishing. His Facebook page also features some nice shelving and table pieces. Call 250-735-4164.

•••

Brian Carriere is moving into the construction world as well after 20 years in the insurance business. Carriere announced on Facebook that he was leaving Schill Insurance (formerly MacDermott’s).

On Aug. 31, Carriere joined Javen Simon Roofing to start a new insulation division. Javen Simon Roofing started in 2008 and now employs more than a dozen people, with more growth expected as the insulation service gets going.

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