Easy Tiger has split from the ELM Restaurant Group

One of the more active restaurant groups of the past decade in Austin has decided to amicably split.

Artisan sausages at Easy Tiger. Matthew Odam/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

ELM Restaurant Group co-founder Bob Gillett has left the group to focus all of his attention on bakery, bar and restaurant Easy Tiger, the second concept from ELM, which opened on East Sixth Street in 2012.

Gillett is joined in leading Easy Tiger into the future, which includes a forthcoming location at the Linc, with partner and “head dough puncher” David Norman, one of Austin’s most accomplished and revered bakers, who will oversee bakery operations and kitchen offerings. Easy Tiger “has received additional capital from a group of local investors that will help immediately ramp up work on the eagerly anticipated Linc shop, which features a vastly expanded baking facility,” according to a rep.

Folks keeping on the Linc, have undoubtedly notices that the store originally slated to open in 2015, has been very slow in progressing. The impediments have come from the variety of ELM projects, but that pace of development should now increase.

“The Linc slowed down because ELM had so many great opportunities (Cookbook, Fareground, etc.) come up at the same time that we didn’t want to turn down,” a representative for ELM said. “We had to prioritize projects based on quite a few factors (timelines, partners, resources, etc). The pace will definitely pick up again with the new focus and money.”

The other three founding ELM partners – chef Andrew Curren, co-founder Scott Hentschel and finance director Vince Ashwill – will continue to manage 24 Diner, Italic, Irene’s and Fareground (where Easy Tiger will remain  in operation), as well as work toward opening Cookbook at the Austin Central Library this spring and 24 Diner at Domain Northside.

In addition to those changes, ELM also recently said goodbye to Mark Sayre, who led the group after two-plus years to be the new service director at McGuire Moorman Hospitality.

*This post has been updated to include information on the Linc and Fareground. 

Author: Matthew Odam

Restaurant critic & features writer at Austin American @Statesman and @Austin360. Austin-born 6th generation Texan. Left-handed.

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