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R.I.P: Austin Hu, Chef of Heritage (and Many Before That), Has Passed Away

By Oct 1, 2020 Dining
Devastating news for China's chef community, for diners, for many many many friends and for his family: Austin Hu, chef, has passed away. No words, really. He was hustling and helping others until his very last days, at last weekend's Heritage Eats food festival. That was what the guy was about: a love of food to his core, and wanting to share that with everyone else. He was a big force in Shanghai's restaurant industry, and not just for Western restaurants, as the hundreds of cooks who worked with him over the years can attest. He was a close friend — we bonded almost immediately after he arrived in Shanghai, and it was clear this guy was going to be something in Shanghai. And he was. He never lost that drive, that curiosity, that ability to overcome setbacks and shitty landlords, and just keep smiling. I don't need to write more. If you knew Austin, as thousands and thousands of us did, through his cooking and his friendship, you knew he was one of the good guys. Rest in peace, brother.

See below for the family's statement, released this afternoon.



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  • 6 months ago Betty Richardson Unverified User

    Austin Hu was a gifted chef, his food was cerebral but comforting. He knew how to take a dish and make it into something that you never thought it could be.

    He was impossibly generous as both a friend and a restaurateur. He changed Shanghai and its food scene for the better.

    I can’t believe he is gone. May he be remembered forever.

  • 6 months ago Hamish Pollitt Unverified User

    This is terribly sad news. Vale Austin.

  • 6 months ago Smarty Granola Unverified User

    It’s sad day for the Shanghai food community. I greatly respected Austin during my precious time in shanghai. Every encounter with the guy gave me new found ideas and elevated ideas of how to handle my company. He represented asian-american chefs everywhere. My condolences to his family.

  • 6 months ago John Hall Unverified User

    Thank you for your kind words about Austin. He was indeed one of the good guys. Gutted.

  • 6 months ago Jay Caplan Unverified User

    I'm so sad. He was so generous and full of joy. My condolences to his loved ones.