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James Beard-Winning Chef From Austin Opening a Restaurant in NYC

Tyson Cole’s crown jewel, Uchi, is headed for Nolita

A dish from Uchi, the critically-acclaimed restaurant from Austin that’s heading for NYC.
A dish from Uchi, the critically-acclaimed restaurant from Austin that’s heading for NYC.
Hai Hospitality

Austin, Texas’s star Japanese restaurant Uchi is opening an outpost in New York. A representative confirms that Uchi is slated to open at 206-210 Elizabeth Street, near Prince Street, in Nolita, by 2025.

Uchi first opened in Austin in 2003, by chef Tyson Cole, who won a James Beard Award in 2011, and honors from Food & Wine in 2005. To date, Cole’s Hai Hospitality restaurants have been a training ground for some of Austin’s most exciting chefs, and subsequently have sprouted offshoots like Uchiko, Uchiba, Loro, the latter a Japanese barbecue partnership with Austin’s esteemed Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue.

Over the years, Cole and his team have been on an expansion kick with locations across the country. This year, Hai Hospitality is opening another Uchi in Scottsdale, Arizona, and Los Angeles, while Uchiko is headed for Plano, Texas. Meanwhile, Uchikos are in the works for 2024 in Denver, Colorado, and Miami Beach, Florida, which joins the Uchis already in both cities.

The New York Uchi will be a large dining room that can seat 235, designed by Islyn Studio, which has worked on projects spanning Dos Toros to Chleo, a new upstate New York spot. Uchi New York will also have a 24-seat private dining room. A petition for a liquor license has been filed with the community board and a representative tells Eater the menu should track with what’s for dinner at the other Uchis around the country.

“Elizabeth Street is a very special, idyllic downtown street with tall tree canopies, sculpture gardens, and an eclectic mix of local boutiques and small restaurants – it’s a street that preserves the old NYC,” says Todd Reppert, chief development officer of Hai Hospitality, shared through a representative.

The Austin import is joining a crowded Japanese fine dining scene in New York, already clouded with luxe omakase parlors. Will New Yorkers take the bait?