EDMONTON -- A local Japanese restaurant saw customers line up down the block for the first time on Wednesday.

Yoshi Express, a Japanese restaurant on Whyte Avenue, saw an uptick in customers after social media blogger Linda Hoang tweeted about visiting the restaurant when it was empty – a reality faced by many businesses in the pandemic.

"People were doing live updates," she told CTV News Edmonton of the public response, mimicking typing on a mobile device. "'I think he’s sold out.' 'He told everyone to go home.' Which is kinda funny," she laughed.

The business opened its doors just weeks ago.

That was one of several reasons why – after seeing Hoang’s posts online – Kiki Yamada decided to visit the eatery.

"I also started a new business during COVID and I come from a family of small business owners, so I know the struggle and I know how hard it can be," she said.

Plus, Yamada added, it's one of the few places in the city where she can get Japanese cuisine and explore that part of her heritage.

"We were like, we have to go."