Fire-damaged Chinese restaurant won’t reopen

May 9, 2019

The owner of a Chinese restaurant damaged in a fire has decided not to reopen the business.

1st Wok at 523 W. 10th St. has been closed since the fire in December. Owner Cheu Chau, 61, said he wanted to start over but has decided that his body can’t handle the demands of running a restaurant. Chau did all the cooking and said he cares too much about the quality of his food to let someone else do it.

Chau opened 1st Wok about a decade ago. He arrived in Sioux Falls as a refugee from Cambodia in 1980 and worked his way up from a dishwasher to a cook at another Chinese restaurant before starting his own business.

Business was slow at 1st Wok the first two years, but with the support of his bankers and landlord, Chau said he was able to gradually build a following in the neighborhood on the west side of downtown.

He wants to keep cooking, so he will try to find a job at another restaurant.

“I will have to start over again,” Chau said.

Property owner Chuck Gustafson said he plans to gut the building and get it ready to be sold or leased.

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Fire-damaged Chinese restaurant won’t reopen

The owner of a Chinese restaurant damaged in a fire has decided not to reopen the business.

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