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.