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Openings/closings: Zen on South Congress transitioning to Lucky Robot; June Rodil leaves Congress

Addie Broyles

Closed and reopening: Zen, the fast-casual Japanese restaurant at 1303 S. Congress Ave, has closed and will reopen next week as a new concept from owner Adam Weisberg, whose other Zen locations on Anderson Lane and Guadalupe Street remain open. Weisberg says that Lucky Robot will offer “a modern twist to traditional Japanese cuisine,” including made-to-order sushi, that will also incorporate a high-tech ordering system to give customers a “digital Tokyo experience.” 444-8081,

Staff changes of note: After leading the beverage team at Congress Austin for the past two years, June Rodil will leave at the end of October to take on the role of general manager at Paul Qui’s new restaurant. Robil had previously worked with Qui at Uchi. Congress Austin announced shortly thereafter that they will be bringing Paula Rester of Vino Vino back to be wine director of all three of Congress’ tentacles, and also act as the manager of Congress. Contigo’s Houston Eaves, one of the city’s most talented bartenders, has accepted a job at The Esquire Tavern in San Antonio. Eaves takes over the helm from Jeret Peña, who opened his new bar The Brooklynite recently.


The Homegrown Revival, a roving supper club from Hillside Farmacy chef Sonya Cote, has announced its fall lineup, which includes a fundraiser dinner at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Boggy Creek Farm for the Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association featuring cocktails from Pam Pritchard of The Tigress. Tickets cost $30 for TOFGA members and $45 for nonmembers and are available at For other Homegrown Revival events, including a Thanksgiving dinner, go to

Ahead of Austin Beer Week, Lucy’s Fried Chicken chef James Holmes and Rain Lily farmer Stephanie Scherzer have been raising two Red Wattle pigs and feeding them mash from (512) Brewery for a special pig roast at 6 p.m. on Tuesday in the parking lot of the restaurant at 2218 College Ave. Tickets cost $17 per person and can be purchased at the door. For info, go to For more Austin Craft Beer Week events, go to

Gusto Italian Kitchen + Wine Bar, Duchman Family Winery and The Wine & Food Foundation of Texas are hosting a five-course fundraiser wine dinner on Monday. Tickets ($50 for foundation members, $60 for nonmembers) and menu are available at