MADISON, Wis. - When Chef Tory Miller took to Instagram to announce Sujeo would be closing after five years on East Washington, the community reacted in collective heartbreak. The Asian-inspired restaurant has a rather cult-like following: customers who delight in a big bowl of "Chef Tory's B-Bap" or a swirl of CBD-infused ice cream.
But their patronage wasn't enough. Citing unsteady business, Miller announced Sujeo will close at the end of the day Friday.
"The best part of owning Sujeo has been the freedom to be myself, explore my roots, and kind of discover who I am, both as a person and a chef," Miller said. "I'll miss the people the most, the misfits that I worked with, and the customers that were truly into what we did there."
"This community has been the backbone of our success," Miller added. "While I am heartbroken to say goodbye of course, I am not going to focus on negatives."
"I have never been happier to have had this experience. I've made some incredible friends and learned more than I could have thought possible, about myself as a person, as a chef, and as a business owner."
Miller said he will now focus on "delivering the best experiences he can" at his other local establishments: Graze, Estrellón, and L'Etoile Restaurant.?
As for what's next for the soon-to-be empty space Sujeo occupied? "My wish for any open space is a Lego store," Miller said, jokingly, only to add, "I'm only kind of joking."
"Seriously, I wish Madison could find a way to buck the trend of, 'Open retail space, let's put a restaurant or bar in!' I think a brunch-y place could be great there. Or pizza. I mostly always want to eat pizza, so that's kind of selfish."
"Peace, love, and noodles forever."