Rene Ortiz “Out” at Sway, La Condesa
We just got word that chef Rene Ortiz is “out” at both La Condesa and Sway. The Scrumptious Chef posted that their “moles” got the scoop and that the chef has left, without providing much more information. The restaurant group’s PR agency was not able to confirm or deny the info, although a representative confirmed to Eater Austin that it was indeed true. The group has not announced a replacement as of yet, though there are many talented sous chefs at both locales.
We’re as baffled as you are, since Sway was built around Ortiz’s concepts of Thai food and the chef told us a few weeks ago that he was planning a trip to Burma with his mentor Mark Miller to learn how to incorporate bitter flavors into his Thai food.
At the time, when we asked what was next for him, he also told us,
“I’m very comfortable now with these two restaurants. My wife and I recently started a jewelry line, Old Licorice, so we’re working hard on that. I would like to do T-shirts and hats and stuff and more branding things of artwork. It’s art before economics, and I stand behind that 100%. What I do for a living is my heart. People pay me for it, and I don’t know why [laughs]. I have fun. It’s not work, that’s for sure.”
We’re very curious to see where the talented chef lands.