Austin Exports

Uchi empire expands with first location outside of Texas

Uchi empire expands with first location outside of Texas

Uchi sushi
You're welcome, Colorado. Photo by Logan Crable

Texas' most famous sushi restaurant is expanding outside the state: Uchi, from Austin chef Tyson Cole, will open a branch in Denver in 2018.

Uchi currently has three locations, in Austin, Houston, and Dallas, which opened on Maple Avenue in 2015. A more casual restaurant-bar called Top Knot opened atop of Uchi Dallas in 2016. The company also owns Uchiko, featuring "Japanese farmhouse cuisine," in Austin.

The newest Uchi is scheduled to open in Denver's popular Curtis Park neighborhood, in a hip real estate development called S*Park. The menu will highlight Cole's best creations from Uchi and Uchiko, from sushi bites to shareable tempura.

"We are excited to open Uchi in such an energetic city with its vibrant culture and evolving food scene," Cole says in a release. "We are always exploring new avenues to expand how we connect with food and the community."

The restaurant will be designed by Denver-based tres birds workshop, but local architect Michael Hsu, who had in hand in the other Uchi locations, will serve as a consultant. The space will make use of S*Park's sweet perks, including a greenhouse and a community garden.

"Uchi's proximity to the greenhouse space above the restaurant and the community garden at S*Park presents an amazing opportunity. We fly in fish daily from around the world but relish the chance to work with local farmers," Cole says.

Hai Hospitality is keeping busy. In addition to opening the new Uchi outpost, the seventh restaurant under the Hai umbrella, the team is working on a new concept in Austin called Loro, a casual Asian smokehouse opening later in 2017.

The group's first foray outside Asian cuisine, Austin's St. Philip Pizza Parlor, abruptly closed in 2015.