In the words of founder, Johnny Hsu:
“Cooking and serving the best Chinese food to the American public has always been my dream. When I was very young, helping mom prepare dinner for the family was a great achievement. I have always enjoyed cooking and I love to eat.
In 1975, four years before I immigrated to the United States, I attended a culinary school specializing in different types of cuisine and cooking. I took an apprenticeship with some of the best chefs in Hong Kong. In 1979, I came to Denver and took a job as a line cook in the coffee shop for the Holiday Inn. Six months later, I began cooking for my brother at the Little Shanghai in Evergreen, Colorado.
In 1980, I took over a failing Chinese restaurant in Littleton and partnered with my sisters. Together, we founded the Jade Garden on Arapahoe Road. In no time, the public learned to enjoy the Chinese food that I had introduced to them from Hong Kong.
In 1985, I founded the Imperial Chinese Seafood Restaurant. I created a menu with several dishes that Denverites had never tasted or heard of before. Such dishes included a steamed whole fish with sauce of different kinds, Sesame Chicken, Hunan Beef and Stir-fried Dungeness Crab with ginger and scallions. It was a hit!
The Imperial was named and voted the “Best of Denver” for a thirteen consecutive years. We had made a great impact on the Chinese Restaurant industry and basically set the standard for Chinese restaurant to follow. For instance, well known dishes such as Sesame Chicken and Lemon Chicken originated from our restaurant. Today, Sesame Chicken is the single most popular dish in every Chinese restaurant in Denver.
I understand change is inevitable. Besides frequently creating new dishes, we always find ways to improve the dishes we already have. I can proudly claim that my Sesame Chicken is still the best in the world. We always use the best quality of fresh meat and vegetables. We are also concern with the health of our customers and so we have modify the way we prepare our food to have no MSG, as well as less oil and sodium.
I believe dining is the ultimate experience. The food, of course, has to be delicious. The service has to be impeccable and the atmosphere has to be warm and cozy. We, at the Imperial, would like to please every customer who walks through our doors. In addition to serving the best Chinese food, our professional wait staffs are able to serve you with great knowledge of Chinese cuisine. So I welcome you to come in and enjoy the best!”