Acclaimed Restaurateur Jody Pennette Authors His First Book

Published November 18th 2015
Modern, Lifestyle Chinese Restaurant Broadens Local Neighborhood Tastes
WUJI Brings an Organic Approach to a Favorite International Cuisine
Acclaimed Restaurateur Jody Pennette Authors His First Book
“Starting and Running a Restaurant”
November 17, 2015, (RYE, NY & GREENWICH, CT) – WUJI Restaurant made its mark on the local dining scene with its first establishment in Scarsdale, NY earlier this fall. It seems its innovative restaurant concept introducing real Chinese food prepared by true Southeast Asia trained chefs was the local culinary world’s missing link. Created and owned by MAAC Hospitality Group, this hybrid of a Chinese noodle house meets dim sum restaurant meets tapas bar, is expanding into Rye, NY in early December, and Greenwich, CT in January 2016.
WUJI’s menu incorporates only fresh, locally sourced meat and produce into authentic recipes and uses traditional and modern preparations, which sets the tone for the underlining culture of the dining experience.  Organic chicken, pasture raised pork, grass fed beef, wild caught fish, cage-free chicken eggs, and organic vegetables are the central ingredients. The food is as pure and natural as it can get, ensuring no MSG hangover post-meal.
The word WUJI signifies “singularity of the universe”, with each restaurant’s décor as an ode to the name with one-of-a-kind Chinese Buddha statue prints lining the walls, photographed exclusively for MAAC Hospitality Group at an artifacts studio in Hollywood. Each statue was transported from its original destination to the studio to be shot, no small feat with one weighing nearly 3,000 pounds. Each WUJI establishment will have its own energetic pulse driven by similar, yet varied Chinese décor specifically designed to capture the attention of each town’s unique vibe.
WUJI Restaurant, a product of MAAC Hospitality Group, is co-owned by Jody Pennette, founder and creative mind behind cb5 Hospitality Consulting, and Moodi Zahid, a business partner and friend for more than 30 years.  Moodi owns an International Travel Agency and their trips around the world have inspired them to collaborate on this exciting project. Cb5 recently developed 18 restaurants in Southeast Asia fueling the passion for great Chinese flavors and identifying technique that can be scaled for their US expansion. The culinary master behind the menu is Chef Guang Zanghou  who is teaming up with Lin Chen, Vice President of Food & Beverage for MAAC Hospitality Group.
Adding to the WUJI restaurant celebration is the launch of co-owner Jody Pennette’s first book, which he co-authored with award-winning journalist Elizabeth Keyser; Idiot's Guides: Starting and Running a Restaurant. Many people dream of owning a restaurant, but they don’t know where to start. The book navigates readers through the basics of honing in on a concept, to gathering start-up capital and building a solid business plan. Readers will also learn how to cherry-pick a great location, choose an appealing design, compose a fantastic menu, hire reliable managers and staff, and successfully market their restaurant.
Chinese menu favorites available at all WUJI locations include; vegetable spring rolls with sweet chili dipping sauce; organic Heritage pork spare ribs with honey-plum glaze; lo mein noodles stir-fried with vegetables and sesame ginger sauce; tangerine beef with Shanghai bok choy; Cantonese roast chicken with crispy garlic and shallots; and spicy fried rice topped with a soft egg. The beverage program focuses on appropriate flavor profiles that pair well with the food. Asian beer selections, cold sake, and a well-crafted wine list are offered, in addition to a fun and creative selection of re-batched “tiki” cocktails that are prepared with top shelf spirits and fresh squeezed juices. Organic house made soda, herbal infusion ice tea service, and blossoming flower hot tea round out the beverage offerings.
In keeping with an American Chinese tradition, WUJI will do a strong take-out business, in addition to delivery, while re-inventing the manner by which it is executed – fresh, hot, via insulated carrier cases and custom designed bikes. WUJI locations open at 5pm each day and accept reservations. For more information and to stay up-to-date with openings visit
 WUJI Locations
SCARSDALE: 2 Chase Road, Scarsdale, NY 10583 – Opened August 2015
RYE: 26 Purchase Street, Rye, NY 10580 – Opening early December 2015
GREENWICH: 68 E Putnam Ave, Greenwich, CT 06830 – Opening January 2016