The last couple of years brought a lot of devastating blows with local spots shutting down, hours cutting down, and business just not running as usual. We’ve adjusted to the new norm and happily welcomed indoor dining back but not every place in town has resurfaced.

Empire Chinese Kitchen

In an obvious effort to prioritize the health and safety of their staff and the community, the beloved Empire Chinese Kitchen closed their doors on March 14, 2020 and opened back up strictly for take-out on September 30 that same year. Since then, their doors have been closed and are merely operating on a take-out window.

Not many businesses could sustain themselves primarily on take-out but this restaurant is so loved and adored and the food they sling is so freaking good that they have been going strong for years as a take-out only spot.

Empire Chinese Kitchen via Facebook

Have you tried their Lobster Rangoon?! If not, finish this article then run to 575 Congress Street in Portland NOW if you want your world ROCKED.

Will Empire Ever Open for Indoor Dining?

I feel like they have to…right? Their big thing is small plates using few ingredients with high quality and fresh, local ingredients so in order to fully enjoy the cuisine you need to experience it indoors fresh from the kitchen. Dining indoors is an experience in itself and the interior décor of the restaurant gives a funky Feng shui, stylish and industrial ambiance that adds to the entire experience.

Empire Chinese Kitchen via Facebook

Fantastic music, beautiful light fixtures, a disco Buddha, potted plants, and natural wood are only part of what makes this place special. We all really, really hope they open their doors back up one day and hopefully one day soon.

In the meantime, we are blessed and grateful to still get a taste of the Empire through their take-out system and we will (im)patiently wait to reconvene indoors again in the future.

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