Former Morning Musume leader Mari Yaguchi, 27, attended a press event this week to promote the opening of her restaurant in Roppongi as part of the Onyasai shabu shabu chain.
Yaguchi, who was also leader of Minimoni - a group formed in 2000 by three girls from Morning Musume who were under 150 cm tall at the time, got stuck into the sublime Japanese beef the chain offers at low prices, and some of the 24 varieties of Japanese-produced salads and vegetables.
Yaguchi said she has been a customer of Onyasai for a long time and had gone there about once a week, finally deciding to get in on the action and open her own store - customizing the cutlery, interior design and some items on the menu.
She said she had included a large number of private booths and a reporter asked her if she would go on a date there. Yaguchi replied that she didn't want to become prey for the mass media, but said she was very excited about the restaurant and will have to wait and see.
The Onyasai shabu shabu chain has more than 200 stores nationwide, and to mark the opening of the Roppongi store, all stores will be offering their 490 yen plates of Japanese beef for 100 yen until March 25 (limited to one plate and excluding lunch time.)© Japan Today