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Nirvana’s Reincarnation

Nirvana owners Rohit and Shivali Sharma
Nirvana owners Rohit and Shivali Sharma

Nirvana restaurant is closed for remodeling now and set to reopen in early October. Nirvana owners Rohit and Shivali Sharma have plans for some exciting changes to the dining areas, menu and bar to create what they believe will be an even more wonderful dining experience.

"For the past year, our guests at Nirvana have really enjoyed the variety of Indian cuisine we’ve offered" says Rohit Sharma "but we think we can satisfy more people’s tastes with a wider variety of dishes".

Nirvana has become well known for its Pacific Northwest breakfasts on weekends and will continue to offer breakfasts along with a new menu for lunch and dinner. There will be some Indian dishes along with fresh local cuisine and interesting fare from many parts of the World.

Rohit comes from a family with extensive restaurant experience. "My family and I have run restaurants in the Los Angeles and San Jose areas for many years and have been successful at creating lasting relationships and an atmosphere where families love to dine. It is in this same spirit, that I have decided to do something that no one in my family has attempted before, to create a restaurant that serves global cuisine. I am a fan of cuisine from other parts of the world. I have been fortunate to live in the US, Caribbean and India, and to travel in Europe and North America, which has given me an outlook that is open to trying new food and learning about cultures different from my own."

Although Shivali Sharma’s background does not include restaurants, she’s an expert on service. She was born in India, grew up in Vancouver, Canada and has a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration specializing in Management. Shivali worked as a Human Resources Manager for the Vancouver School Board including being part of a multicultural liaison team. Then, she says "I married the man of my dreams, quit my job and joined my husband on Vashon." Speaking of Nirvana’s next phase, Shivali says "Exceptional food, beautiful atmosphere and wonderful service is the key. Combining Rohit’s experience and passion with my service and management skills, I want to bring Nirvana to the next level. We envision a cool place on the island for a great meal, creative cocktails and live music."

About the changes coming to Nirvana, Chef Robert Erickson says "I’m really looking forward to serving people on this island truly great food. I think everyone will be surprised at the variety and presentation we will offer". Mr. Erickson, who was trained at the Culinary Institute of America and in France, has won two international culinary gold medals and named among Great Chefs of the West and Great Chefs of the World by the Food Network. He has worked at Maxim’s in Paris, Spago in Los Angeles, and was executive chef at Sun Valley Resort where he cooked for celebrities and world leaders. Robert joins the Nirvana kitchen team by way of The Shelburne Inn on the Washington coast where he was executive chef. "I wanted to be close to a major city at an interesting restaurant again and being at Nirvana on Vashon has helped me realize that goal." says Erickson.

Mr. Sharma, who moved to Vashon from Southern California last October, says "For the past year, my family and I have lived here on Vashon Island offering Indian cuisine at Nirvana. We have loved this experience and have loved meeting and talking to so many warm, kind people. Vashon has been very kind to me, and I have grown as a person because of it. It is my home, and when I am away from Vashon, I miss it like an old friend."

Rohit likes to think of dining with others as a way to world peace. "A good meal can bring people together in a way that no other medium can. Food can be the catalyst to bring down barriers and ideologies, because basically, people love good food. People from different backgrounds may not agree at times, but what we can all agree on is that we love delicious food. My mission is to bring that idea to Vashon. A place where food is not judged on where it is from, but simply by how it tastes and how it brings people together. Our new menu will encompass dishes that are fresh, local and global."

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