Restaurateur Emmett Fox of Fino - Biography

Austin, TX

March 2012

When Restaurateur Emmett Fox opened his first restaurant in 2000, it was his two decades of culinary experience that made it a success. ASTI Trattoria was, for Fox, the culmination of more than 20 years of back-of-the-house experience, and a love letter to the rustic Italian fare he had cooked for much of that time. That success of ASTI, as well as his frequent visits to the trattorias and vineyards of the Mediterranean, led to Fox’s next success: the 2005 opening of FINO, a Spanish-focused restaurant. His experience came into view even more so with FINO, as he built it at the same location as where one of his former haunts, the now-closed restaurant Granite Café, used to operate.

Fox graduated the Culinary Institute of America, then moved briefly to Houston before landing a job as chef at The Wild Goose in Boston’s Fanueil Hall. While in Boston, he met wife Lisa (FINO co-owner and food blogger) while they were both chefs at Arturo’s Ristorante, and they both moved to Austin shortly after. Since then Fox has won a number of awards, and for a time served on the board for the Hill Country Wine & Food Festival (which changed its name to the Austin Food & Fine Alliance). His journey is not yet complete, and it will be exciting to see what one of the hottest restaurateurs in Austin has next on his plate.