Fresh off the Austin Chronicle 12/14/12 presses:
There's some interesting sales news in the food business this week. The last remaining link to Jorge Arredondo's popular Casita Jorge's restaurant chain of the Seventies and Eighties has been sold. Current owner Diana Veloz and her family own a successful chain of Jorge's restaurants in West Texas, and she bought the restaurant at 2203 Hancock Drive ten years ago in a bankruptcy sale. The prime Rosedale property has attracted a number of suitors over the years, and the prices being offered finally became too good to ignore. Veloz opted to sell the property and will focus on creating a couple of new restaurant concepts with some longtime Austin employees and the next generation of her family learning the business. The group of hospitality professionals who bought the property includes Chuy's co-founder Mike Young, Will Muntz of Lucky Lounge, and John Korioth of Hangar Lounge and Six Lounge. "John grew up in this neighborhood and I've lived over here for 20 years. We're excited about creating a place that our neighbors can enjoy, a place you can walk to or ride your bike to for good Tex-Mex food and drinks. I can sum up our concept in four words: Tex-Mex neighborhood tavern," Muntz told me earlier this week. Jorge's closes on Dec. 22 and, once all the permits are in place, the 9,000-square- foot building will undergo a thorough remodel designed by restaurant architect Michael Hsu. Muntz is cautiously optimistic that La Mancha Tex-Mex Tavern will open in the spring of 2013 with chef Chris Chism on the range.