Kai Bistro, 625 Has Asian Fusion Focus

  • Thursday, October 19, 2023
  • Gail Perry

A beer permit was issued Thursday to Kai Bistro, 625, which is owned by Chen Miao, who said his family was among the first generation Asian-Americans to open a business in Chattanooga.

Mr. Miao said he has learned a lot in the 30 years he has been in the industry, starting with working at his parents’ restaurant. Kai Bistro, his new restaurant, was described as Asian Fusion. The food will be Korean-based mixed with other Asian ingredients. He said that beer will be like a condiment to the food.

The restaurant also has a TABC license and will   be selling spirits and wine.  

“I love to see people leaving and smiling  or rubbing their belly,” he told the Beer Board,  

The capacity is 51 seats inside and 122 with the patio seating. Hours of operation are Monday. through Saturday from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, dinner will be served from 5-10 p.m. And Friday and Saturday dinner will be served from 5-11 p.m.

Longhorn Steakhouse was approved for a consumer beer license at the 1806 Gunbarrel Road location. These restaurants in Chattanooga are all corporately owned and the company provides in-house training in alcohol sales, in addition to requiring all front of the house employees and managers to also be TABC certified. It will employ may people who lost jobs after a fire at the Brainerd Road location last January. One of the owners, Jon Castleberry, said he expects to also hire 30-40 more servers.

The Hotel Chalet at 92 Choo Choo Avenue received a consumer beer permit earlier this month. On Thursday the hotel was approved for a dual license, when a carry-out beer permit was added. This will allow beer to be sold in the restaurant Elsie’s Daughter, so that guests can move around the property with a beverage. To prevent people from leaving the property, one of the owners, Jessica LaRosa said employees would be watching the front exit and if people go out the back door, the property is completely fenced.

Audra Scott, one of the owners of Scenic City Cigars Social, also returned to the beer board after receiving a consumer license at the last meeting. Her business, which is a premium cigar retail shop, was approved to also have a brown bag license that will allow customers to bring their own beer. She described the business as being more like a coffee shop as opposed to a bar-scene, plus hours from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. are not conducive to drinking, she said.

Two locations of MAPCO Express were approved for a carry-out beer permit that was needed because of the change in ownership. The store at 201 Browns Ferry Road and 2282 Encompass Drive were warned that those locations have a history of selling to underage buyers. Board member Ron Smith said that means that young people believe it is a place that they can buy beer.

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