A few years back Imperia on Colorado was introduced to Austin as the home of “vibe dining” and an extension of the famous TAO restaurants in Vegas and New York.[They opened with the Sous Chef from Tao Vegas on board].
It also introduced many of us to C.K.Chin who has now become, shall we say, a bit better known.
Alas, the grand vision of dining and social mingling failed to ever really materialize, despite some fine talent in the kitchen and the sushi bar helmed by Tatsu san who left to start Ramen Tatsuya.
I always enjoyed my meals at Imperia. The Pan Asian styles of cooking were riveting and compelling. The ambiance was incredible.
So it’s hard to really quantify why this place didn’t make it. My suspicion was that it might have been a bit of an overreach financially for the partner group, headed by Michael Girard.
Nonetheless, I shall miss this spot where i sake bombed myself into one fine stupor on a memorable birthday night. And like Musashino (although now moved to 29th and San Gabriel), we can appreciate Imperia for launching the careers of some serious culinary players.