Huge news for Austin's sushi scene and Paul Qui obsessive everywhere: Qui has teamed up with restauranteur Jesse Herman to open a sushi counter in the South Congress Hotel. According to The Statesman, Otoko will be a 12 seat counter-only restaurant serving high grade fish in a tasting menu format.
The omakase-style menu will be a blend of "Tokyo-style sushi and Kyoto-style kaiseki with an Austin sensibility," according to a press release. Reservations will be ticketed; so far the only other Austin restaurant using a ticketing system is Qui's tasting room.
The South Congress Hotel will feature two other new restaurants when it opens in Summer 2015. Paul Qui also operates his flagship restaurant, Qui, and the burgeoning East Side King empire, and tells The Statesman Otoko will be his primary focus once it opens.
Watch this space for further updates. The full press release is below:
AUSTIN, TX (March 12, 2015)-Violet Crown, an Austin-based integrated hospitality management and development company, is excited to announce Otoko, a Japanese restaurant by Paul Qui. Chef Qui is a Top Chef and James Beard Foundation Award winner, and he was named ‘Chef of the Year' by Esquire magazine and ‘Best New Chef' by Food & Wine magazine.
Scheduled to open in late summer 2015, Otoko is Chef Qui's follow-up to the nationally acclaimed Qui and is located inside of South Congress Hotel. At just twelve seats, Otoko features an omakase menu, blending Tokyo-style sushi and Kyoto-style kaiseki with an Austin sensibility. Reservations will be available through a ticketed reservation system.
"Otoko is an extraordinary and really unique project for me to be a part of, and I'm excited to have the opportunity to get back to Japanese cuisine and particularly sushi, which is where I started at Uchi many years ago," says Chef Qui.
"Paul and I have been friends for years," says South Congress Hotel partner Jesse Herman. "So the opportunity to finally collaborate with him is a dream come true. We got to take a research trip to Japan and meet our vendors at the Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo and just travel around the country and eat and get inspired."