COVID-19 and renovations shuttered indoor dining since March 2020

2.22.21 (Gastonia, N.C.) – A fresh, stylish and safe dining room awaits at Sake Express’ Gastonia location, which reopens its indoor space this March.

Following almost a full year of its dining room being closed, Sake Express in Gastonia will reopen inside dining to customers on Monday, March 1. The locally owned restaurant closed its doors to indoor guests in March 2020 due to COVID-19.

As COVID-19 restrictions began to lift, the Belmont dining room reopened on Nov. 2 with social distancing and increased safety measures in place. The same protections and standards will carry to Gastonia as it reopens indoor dining.

“We cannot wait to welcome everyone back into the restaurant,” said Lisa Nguyen, co-owner of Sake Express with her sister, Linda Nguyen. “It’s been a long year, but we’ve refreshed the indoor space and put coronavirus precautions in place to ensure a beautiful and safe dining experience.”

Gastonia renovations began Nov. 30; final touches are currently underway. The full remodel included gutting the dining area and bathrooms. Guests can expect a new layout and design at the East Franklin Boulevard restaurant – fresh paint, flooring, lighting and seating as well as amplified pandemic precautions such as a hand-wash station upon entering.

“We usually try to redo the restaurant every 10 years,” said Nguyen. “But with coronavirus closing our indoor operations, we chose to turn that into an opportunity by renovating two years ahead of schedule.”

The Gastonia restaurant remained open throughout most of the indoor remodel process, extending drive-thru and pickup services. The location welcomes guests to a grand reopening of the dining room on March 1. An in-person celebration is slated for a to-be-determined date as COVID-19 regulations continue to improve.

About Sake Express

Sake Express is a casual, swift-service restaurant with two locations in Gaston County, North Carolina, serving a delicious menu of quality, made-to-order Japanese cuisine. Established locations in Belmont and Gastonia share recipes developed by the family’s patriarch and Sake founder in 1999, and perfected by his daughters, sisters Lisa Nguyen and Linda Nguyen, who co-own and -operate the brand. “When you crave quick and healthy,” fresh ingredients, reliable flavors and a spoonful of shrimp sauce, discover Sake Express. Learn more at