Weather Forecast


Business thrives at Four Seas Super Buffet

The Four Seas Super Buffet is a new restaurant located in the East Brainerd Mall specializing in Japanese and Chinese food. Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls1 / 3
Customers enjoy their meal at the Four Seas Super Buffet in the East Brainerd Mall. Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls2 / 3
Owner Yuan Yi Li (left) and manager of the Four Seas Super Buffet Joy Dong talk about the new restaurant in the East Brainerd Mall that specializes in Japanese and Chinese food. Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls3 / 3

When Yuan Yi Li and his wife, Qiao Jiao Ding, opened Four Seas Super Buffet at the East Brainerd Mall in March it was clear there was a demand for oriental food in Brainerd.

Speaking through an interpreter, manager Joy Dong, Li said business was very good at the beginning drawing about 120 customers a day. Business settled down a bit, he said, but continues to be good. Lunch is the busiest meal of the day at the buffet.

During the early opening days he employed about 12 or 13 employees. He now employs seven or eight workers.

Li has been in the restaurant business about 14 years. He and his wife have a 15-year-old son, an exceptional student who is attending school in New York City.

Dong, the manager, said Li is very talented and did some of the construction inside the business before it opened.

"He can do everything," she said.

A recent transplant to Brainerd who arrived here from New York City on July 4, Dong said she enjoyed working for the restaurant owner.

"I enjoy his personality," she said

Dong said she has noticed that the restaurant is particularly busy on rainy days when "everybody comes" to the restaurant.

She said some of the popular dishes at Four Seas Super Buffet are Gen. Tso's chicken, sweet and sour chicken and Mongolian beef. Most customers, she said chose to select their own entrees off the buffet.

Four Seas Super Buffet is a Chinese and Japanese restaurant, located next to Cub Foods at 403 Eighth Ave. NE. The mall is located at the intersection of Mill Avenue and Highway 210. The restaurant is in space that was formerly used by Pam's Hallmark.

Mike O'Rourke
Mike O'Rourke began his career at the Brainerd Dispatch in 1978 as a general assignment reporter. He was named city editor in 1981 and associate editor in 1999. He covers politics and writes features and editorials.
(218) 855-5860