Looks like the increase in restaurant options in Downtown Phoenix was putting the hurt on Sens Asian Tapas after all.
In February, Owner and Chef Johnny Chu, whose former restaurants included Lucky Dragon in Tempe and Fate in downtown's Roosevelt Row district, told me that Sens, his chic Asian small-plate restaurant and lounge located on the periphery of downtown's bustling core, has seen a drop in business. His clientele of young downtown professionals could now walk to a host of new eateries as opposed to getting in a car and driving to Sens, where, Chu said, parking is expensive.
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Now it appears that Chu, who eventually closed his lunch operation at Sens and was staying open only for dinner (Nearby neighbor and casual Jamaican restaurant The Breadfruit did the same on January 1), has changed his mind on relocating his restaurant.
According to The Republic, Sens' lease is up in June, and Chu will be moving his restaurant to a vacant storefront at 2807 North Central Avenue (Central Avenue and Thomas) in Central Phoenix, changing the restaurant's name to Shochu House, and opening in June for lunch and dinner service with the same menu as Sens.
The Republic goes on to say that Chu also plans to open a new restaurant at 10738 North 75th Avenue in Peoria in late summer -- an "Asian chop house" called Lantern.