Kazuya “Kazy” Kurokawa, owner of Kazy’s Gourmet in Dallas, passed away Tuesday morning at the age of 63. According to longtime store employee Roda Valero, Kurokawa had not been ill, and the unexpected loss came as a surprise to his friends, family and coworkers.
Open since 1978, Kazy’s moved to its current location at 9256 Markville Drive (off of I-635) about 15 years ago. The store is a well-respected wholesale supplier to many top sushi and Japanese restaurants.
Shuji Sugawara of Shinshei is a regular customer and knew Kurokawa well. “He opened the doors to the sushi business here in the Southwest,” the chef recalled of the owner’s influential role in the industry.
In addition to its large professional clientele, Kazy’s retail and deli sections are open to the general public. Kurokawa took great pride in providing a resource for traditional products and ingredients to the local Japanese community.
Perhaps most of all, Kurokawa will be remembered for his generosity and enthusiasm. “He was an invaluable supporter and investor to many sushi bar owners in Dallas and the surrounding cities,” explained Michelle Carpenter, owner of Zen Sushi in Oak Cliff, via email earlier today.
Remembering her friend of over 20 years, Carpenter wrote, “No one can ever replace Kazy.”
Kazy’s Gourmet plans to maintain normal business hours, despite this tragic loss.