One of Winnipeg's oldest sushi restaurants is closing its doors today.

After 24 years in business, Edohei Restaurant is closing for good.

Its owner, Sadao Ono, opened the restaurant in 1988. At the time, it was one of the city's only sushi restaurants. Despite fearing the business might fail, Ono quickly developed a following.

"Lots of people regularly come," Ono said. "Nice, nice people."

The chef is considered a pioneer of Japanese cooking in the city and trained some of the city's top sushi chefs, many of whom have now branched out on their own.

"I do consider him the father of sushi in Winnipeg," said Cho Venevongsa, a former student of Ono's.

Venevongsa owns the Wasabi sushi restaurants in Winnipeg.

"He brought a lot of things to the city – to sushi culture," Venevongsa said. "What he brought to the city was the philosophy of fresh vegetables, good product and believing in what he does everyday."

Ono has mixed feelings about the closure, he said. He's sad to see the business go, but he's happy about and grateful for "the support to us and my family from the Winnipeg people," he said.

Despite saying goodbye to the business, Ono said food will always be a part of his life. He's planning to pass on his culinary secrets to other aspiring sushi artists across the city.

"In a little while I'm going to retire," Ono said.

"It's too bad it has to come to an end," said Venevongsa.

Edohei's building will soon be demolished, with medical offices slated to go up in its place.

- with a report from CTV's Rajeev Dhir